Fort Worth Public Art (FWPA), a City of Fort Worth Program managed by the Arts Council of Fort Worth, is pleased to present new groundbreaking public artworks by two internationally acclaimed new media artists: Los Angeles-based artist Refik Anadol and Rome- and London-based artist Quayola. These large-scale new media installations will premiere as the first of four major public art projects across Fort Worth, a project coinciding with FWPA’s 20th anniversary year, continuing Fort Worth’s long history of supporting the arts and showcasing its dedication to promoting innovation and technology. The pair of works has been commissioned by the City of Fort Worth to be projected on all four sides of the 204-foot tall historic Pioneer Tower located in the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth’s Cultural District on August 20–21, 2021. The event will be free and open to the public.
“The Arts Council, in partnership with AURORA, is excited to welcome the entire community to the Cultural District to experience the Pioneer Tower premier alongside works of talented and diverse local and regional artists.” – Karen Wiley, President & CEO, Arts Council of Fort Worth
For their audio-visual works, Anadol and Quayola both took advantage of the newest artificial intelligence and data visualization technology to create their works. For Pioneer Tower Dreams, Refik Anadol captures and reimagines Fort Worth citizens' memories of the city using machine learning algorithms. Texas Surveys: New Pointillism, Landscape Scans and Horse Paintings by Quayola explores the natural beauty of Fort Worth through what he calls “computational paintings,” which visualize data captured from sources such as laser-scanned trees or the motion-captured movement of horses.
“This first-of-its-kind event will celebrate Fort Worth’s collective memories and natural beauty in a big way through a marriage of art and cutting-edge technology by two of the most prominent new media artists in the world today.” - Martha Peters, Director of Public Art, Arts Council of Fort Worth
Pioneer Tower was rehabilitated in 2019, recreating its historic glass brick windows and updating the internal lighting system. During that time, project partners Joshua King and Shane Pennington—co-founders and part of the creative team behind public arts organization AURORA—worked with the FWPA program to ensure the Tower’s infrastructure possessed the data and energy necessary for large-scale projected video installations. King and Pennington also served as consultants in the process that led to the selection of new media curator DooEun Choi and artists Refik Anadol and Quayola for this inaugural installation.
To celebrate the unveiling of these artworks, the Arts Council of Fort Worth and AURORA are partnering to organize a supporting exhibition, which will run throughout the duration of Anadol and Quayola’s presentations. Fort Worth-based creative entrepreneur, scholar, and curator Lauren Cross, Ph.D., will select works by North Texas artists who work with technology-based art.
“AURORA continues to grow with this ground breaking project, we’re excited to help expand and continue the dialogue of Fort Worth's history with our vision of how technology and the arts can and are connecting local communities and artists beyond North Texas.” – Joshua King, Executive Director, AURORA
About Refik Anadol:
Refik Anadol is a media artist and director. Born in Istanbul, Turkey, he currently lives and works in Los Angeles where he is a lecturer and visiting researcher at UCLA’s Department of Design Media Arts. His works explore the space between digital and physical entities by creating a hybrid relationship between architecture and the media arts using machine intelligence. His site-specific audio/visual performances have been seen in Seoul, San Francisco, Washington DC, Istanbul, Berlin, and on the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.
Quayola employs technology as a lens to explore the tensions and the equilibrium between seemingly opposing forces: real and artificial, figurative and abstract, old and new. His varied practices, all deriving from custom computer software, includes audio/visual performance, video, sculpture, and works on paper. In the past three years, Quayola’s work has been exhibited across the globe, with major exhibitions in London, New York, Tokyo, Seoul, Paris, and the Sundance Film Festival.
About Fort Worth Public Art:
Fort Worth Public Art is a City of Fort Worth program created to enhance the visual environment, commemorate the city’s rich cultural and ethnic diversity, integrate artwork into the development of the City’s capital infrastructure improvements, and to promote tourism and economic vitality. Managed by the Arts Council of Fort Worth with oversight by the Fort Worth Art Commission, FWPA strives for artistic excellence and meaningful community engagement. For more information, please visit https://fwpublicart.org/pioneer-tower/.
About the Arts Council of Fort Worth:
The Arts Council of Fort Worth was formed in 1963 to provide funding and leadership to stimulate and assure the advancement of the arts throughout Fort Worth. Today’s Arts Council continues to promote, nurture, and support the arts in Fort Worth by providing fiscal and business resources to local artists and arts groups while also serving the community through management of the Fort Worth Public Art Program and Fort Worth Community Arts Center. The Arts Council of Fort Worth is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization supported in part by the City of Fort Worth and the Texas Commission on the Arts. For more information, please visit www.artsfortworth.org
AURORA is a public arts organization at the intersection of art, technology and community that presents works by some of the most visionary artists of our time. A cornerstone of arts and culture in North Texas, AURORA aims to expand the future of art through a dialogue that engages the creative possibilities within ourselves and each other. Since its founding in 2010 by artists Shane Pennington and Joshua King—along with veteran arts supporter Veletta Forsythe Lill—AURORA’s exhibitions, programming and Biennial have attracted over 300,000 visitors and commissioned and presented more than 320 local, regional and international artists. For more information, visit dallasAURORA.com