Tag Archives: KPRC Local 2

‘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.

 

 

 

 

Unprecedented Growth for Houston’s Airports

If you needed another sign that the Houston region is growing (besides skyrocketing property taxes and increasingly clogged freeways), this may do the trick.  The city’s big airport will be adding a second international terminal.  Here’s more from KPRC Local 2

Houston City Council members unanimously approved a funding and phasing plan for a new international terminal building at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.

The new facility would replace the existing Mickey Leland International Terminal Building, Terminal D, and would be constructed in the same location as the existing structure.

“Houston is firmly established as a key player on the global market stage, and we need an international terminal building that adequately reflects that standing,” said Houston Mayor Annise Parker. “International travel is vital to both our economic health and our quality of life.  We’ve been remarkably successful in attracting new international air service to Houston, and now it’s time to address the infrastructure needs at George Bush Intercontinental Airport.”

The news of a landmark expansion at IAH comes barely 10 months after construction started at Houston Hobby, which is also building a new international terminal thanks to Southwest Airlines.  If the Bayou City has a goal of becoming the United States’ premiere international gateway, it seems like these projects will put the area well on the way.

With the constant stream of “Houston booming” stories, many people are probably questioning if the city needs all of these huge, simultaneous projects right now.  It’s a fair question to ask, as a lot of money is being spent in the area to get all of this done. For the airport system at least, here are a few concrete reasons for “Why Houston, why now?”…

1) Some of this growth is actually being directed to Houston by the federal government.  In an effort to alleviate air traffic at very busy sites like Atlanta and New York, the FAA steered more air traffic through Houston as a way for flights to save on fuel costs and cut carbon emissions.  Many of these new routes, which result in shorter flights for the airlines, started at the end of May.

2) Houston has seen impressive growth in International Flight service, with much of it warranted by demand.  In just one year, the flight scheduled has added non-stops to Seoul, Munich, Beijing and Istanbul.  New flights to Stavanger, Norway, Chile and possibly another destination will be announced later this year.

No question about it… the Houston airport system is booming right now.  But given the growing importance of air travel in a global world, hopefully this boom will lead to better prosperity for the region in the years to come.