Did you know that all new and renovated City of Houston facilities must dedicate 1.75% of the construction budget towards civic art? We partnered with the Houston Arts Alliance to acquire and commission art pieces from 12 artists. You can find civic art pieces throughout the building, even in the most unexpected places.
With hundreds of visitors flowing through the building daily, we wanted the art to be engaging and dynamic, reflect the diversity of the city, reveal the work that goes on inside the building, and reflect the city's commitment with green building practices, recycling and reuse.
One major theme of the art pieces relates to Houston's topography. The artist Aggie etched metal panels for the Information Desk and Security Desk with acid in the topography of Houston.
The geography of Houston is also on display with art pieces by GONZO 247. He has two pieces alluding to Houston's highway system and buildings. Other pieces highlight Houston's east side - focusing on the coffee plant and manufacturing.
Words and Phrases
Words and phrases that nod to the permitting process can be found throughout the floors. Not all sayings are in English, however. Sign language and barcodes can be found as well.
Playful sticky notes were placed on walls throughout the building. Can you find them all?
Sustainability and Recycling
Recycled and re-purposed materials can be found in artwork throughout the building. From the recycled metals in the Torrent piece located in our Green Building Resource center to the the reclaimed wood used in the barcodes above the permit counter.
Green, sustainable paints - with low VOCs - was used in the mural in the basement. Houston's diversity is also on display, featuring the major languages spoken: English, Spanish, Mandarin, Vietnamese and Arabic. A further dimension to the recycling mural is added when you consider Arabic is read from right to left - completing the circle of recycling.
Participatory art can be found on the 1st floor. Sound meters were placed around the columns of the waiting area and the waves are displayed above the kiosk.
Relieve some stress with the X piece. Not only does it allude to the East End of Houston with the coffee plant along Canal/Navigation. The coffee bags contain chimes with different tones. Compose a tune while you wait.