‘Wings’ In Houston Sparks Interesting Arts Debate

Few places in the city of Houston are more public, or more treasured than Discovery Green Park.  Though it’s one of the most recent public spaces created in Downtown, the park has quickly become a destination for residents, convention visitors and tourists.

But this month, Discovery Green  has also become the sight a brewing controversy over public art appropriateness.  Now through February 2015, the park is hosting the work of acclaimed Mexican artist Jorge Marín.  The exhibit, entitled Wings of the City, is a collection of nine sculptures which depict various aspects of the human body, including nudity.  Here’s more on that from Discovery Green’s website

For over 25 years, Marín has presented his winged sculptures in more than 200 exhibits worldwide. Wings of the City had been viewed by more than one million people on Mexico’s Paseo de la Reforma before appearing at the Brownsville Museum of Fine Arts, and now at Discovery Green! The allegorical and fantastic creatures portray perfection of the human body, and spark dialogue around themes of desire, will and determination with the body and mind.

The images have left many Houstonians to wonder if such a public display of this work is appropriate.  The Houston Matters panel, consisting of myself, Charles Kuffner of Off the Kuff, local illustrator Maria Heg, and Houston Public Media’s Edel Howlin serving as moderator.   Like many across the city we had a lively discussion about the appropriateness of the artwork, and whether it should be displayed in forum such as Discovery Green.  Check out the segment below…

Since the segment, I have had a chance to view Wings of the City, and must say that it is an excellent collection of works, made even more effective by strategic placements around the park.  Venue makes a difference in this context, and the art simply wouldn’t be the same if it were confined within a museum.  After viewing the work, you can count me in the group that has no problem with it.  But as KPRC Local 2 reports, there are still plenty of people, even after viewing, that do take issue.

What is your view about Wings of the City?  Should it be allowed at Discovery Green?  Let me know your opinion in the comments.

 

 

 

 

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