24 February, 2010 | Art, Awards, Press, Recognition

Helix Awarded for a DREAM

Missouri Bank, BKS Real Estate, and Helix Architecture + Design have earned a gold  level “Art Achievement” award by Art through Architecture (AtA) for commissioning “DREAM,” a new, site-specific art installation by Archie Scott Gobber. The project was commissioned as part of the architectural renovation of the historic former Star Motors building in Kansas City’s  Brookside neighborhood.

Via: BroadwayWorld.com

Missouri Bank, BKS Real Estate, and Helix Architecture + Design have earned a gold level “Art Achievement” award by Art through Architecture (AtA) for commissioning “DREAM,” a new, site-specific art installation by Kansas City-based artist Archie Scott Gobber. The project was commissioned as part of the architectural renovation of the historic former Star Motors building at 7 West 62nd Terrace in the Brookside neighborhood of Kansas City, MO.

Gobber’s installation animates one long wall of Missouri Bank’s new vehicular drive-through, which runs through the center of the building. It features large-scale, hand-painted aluminum letters (each approx 93″x84″) spelling “DREAM,” which float off of a brightly painted, horizontally-striped background spanning the length of the drive-through, some 90 feet long.

“DREAM has an appearance of movement from the first viewing of the letters to the powerful stripes that run the length of the wall,” said Gobber, who is known for smart text-based artworks that often draw inspiration and meaning from pop culture and current events. “Contained in the work is LED lighting that glows from behind the letters as if spray-painted, a street artist nod that is common to my paintings. A skewed arching perspective within the letters, combined with a painted drop shadow that looks a foot thick, makes for an imposing message – as imposing as one chooses to see it. I see DREAM as a hopeful, humanist, nostalgic and proud statement by a local bank that is committed to people. It says ‘You’re in the right place.'”

Reeves Wiedeman, a principal at Helix Architecture + Design, identified the potential for incorporating an art component into the project from an early stage, and contacted Art through Architecture to help facilitate this process.

“Parking being at a premium in Brookside, it was George Gilchrist [of BKS Real Estate] who came up with the idea of bringing the bank’s vehicular drive ‘literally’ through the middle of the building instead of sticking it out in the parking lot like most banks typically do,” he said. “Helix saw potential in the idea of creating a new kind of drive-through facility where customers could feel (almost) like they’re driving right into the bank’s lobby when making a transaction. The 90-foot long “blank” wall on one side of the drive-through presented a unique architectural challenge visually, which is why we decided to collaborate with a local artist.”

Through AtA, a partnership of American Institute of Architects-Kansas City and Charlotte Street Foundation, new architectural projects may earn Gold, Silver or Bronze levels of Art Achievement by dedicating a percentage of the total construction budget to collecting artworks, commissioning temporary or permanent artworks, and/or including artists on design teams. AtA facilitates this process by providing a web-based database at www.ArtArch.org, featuring work by some 90 artists selected for the program through a competitive process, and by providing hands-on support for project implementation, from artist selection through completion. This commission has qualified for the highest level, Gold Art Achievement.

“DREAM is a spectacular addition to the building,” said Grant Burcham, President and CEO of Missouri Bank. “Not only does it make an ordinary drive-through extraordinary, it speaks to our entrepreneurial niche. Entrepreneurs are dreamers by definition!”