Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Peter Calaboyias’ Silver Grid Wall Pittsburgh Airport Public Art

Peter Calaboyias’ statement in defense of not removing the Silver Grid Wall, from the airside terminal at the Pittsburgh International airport:

This work has been the topic of an important political issue relevant to artists and their work. Please take a moment to read his argument in favor of keeping the work in place.

As you may know by now, the Allegheny County Airport Authority is planning on removing the Silver Grid Wall from its site location at the airside terminal. This work was funded by public funds and designed specifically for the wall above the escalators.

The main issue here is the removal of a specific site sculpture for the purpose of reusing the space to gain revenue from commercial advertising. Public sculpture can always be removed and relocated for many reasons. Case in point was the removal of four sculptures in the 1980’s at the Carnegie Library, Squirrel Hill Branch, for building expansion. The works were dumped and forgotten in a city warehouse. These have since been found and will be refurbished and relocated in city parks.

This may be the first time that any city, county, state or federal government will remove a specific site work and to then reuse the site for commercial gain. It will happen right here in Allegheny County and the removal has been approved by our Allegheny County Executive director.

It brings attention to a compelling argument not to remove any publicly funded site specific works by government for the sole purpose of gaining additional revenue by selling the space to advertisers. One can see that commissioned works now occupying valuable real estate in the city and county may be in danger of removal for similar reason. I would ask of you to send an e-mail to Dan Onorato expressing your thoughts to keep the sculpture at the airport.

E-mail address of Dan Onorato:
executive@county.allegheny.pa.us

We hope you will voice your support not to remove work for the reason stated.


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