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International Artist Sarah Morris Chosen for STL Art Commission

Posted on January 14, 2020 in Art Media Releases

Sarah Morris has been chosen for a new commissioned art work in Concourse C checkpoint Atrium. Credit: Anna Gaskell.

St. Louis Lambert International Airport has chosen New York-based artist Sarah Morris for a new commissioned art work in the Concourse C checkpoint atrium that will be installed later this year as part of celebrations marking the Airport’s 100th anniversary. It will be the largest commissioned art work in the 10-year history of the airport’s Lambert Art & Culture Program.

The 2020 Legacy Project is intended to be an artwork located on a highly prominent 2-story wall, post-security, in the light-filled atrium of the Yamasaki-designed Terminal, adjacent to the C Concourse Checkpoint. The 2020 Legacy Project has the potential to help define the experience of passengers arriving and departing through the C Concourse and is highly visible from the Ticketing Level of Terminal, 1 when overlooking the checkpoint.   

“The 2020 Legacy Project is one way we will celebrate 100 years of aviation at STL and the legacy of Albert Bond Lambert, who first leased farmland on this site in 1920 for the birth of commercial aviation here,” said STL Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “We’re excited to begin working with Sarah Morris who will first develop a concept that we hope reflects on our city and the Terminal’s iconic design with her own mark.”

Sarah Morris is an internationally recognized artist who has produced a large body of paintings and films, which reflect her interest in networks, typologies, architecture and the city, and the psychology of urban environments. These observations are articulated through color and geometric abstraction to create a new language of place and politics.

Morris studied at Brown University and Cambridge University. She participated in the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program. She received the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painting Award in 2001, and in 1999-2000 was an American Academy Award Berlin Prize Fellow.

“Everything is public and yours for changing its meaning. An artist decides how and in what manner to use this communication and to what end,” says Sarah Morris, describing her work. “Everything public is in constant flux and constantly guarded precisely because of this vulnerability.”

The 2020 Legacy Project at St. Louis Lambert International Airport is a fascinating project for the artist as the location mirrors the action, movement and systems that are the basis of her practice and what she finds most intriguing.

Airports are the global connection to locations around the world. Morris has executed a number of projects in transit centers in international urban locales over the years. This includes Art on the Underground at London Glouster Road Station (2012), Montreux Oberland Bernois Railway train that connects regional and urban Switzerland (2017 – 2021), a mural made of ceramic tiles in the Ft. Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport (2017), and most recently the Metropolitan Transport Authority’s 39th Avenue-Dutch Kills subway station on the N and W line in New York City (2019). This year, she will also complete a ceramic tile installation at Toronto Metrolinx’s Science Center Station on the Eglinton Crosstown LRT in Toronto, Canada.

Sarah Morris was chosen for the art commission by the Airport’s seven-member Airport Art Advisory Committee who reviewed several hundred submissions. The committee consists of Lisa Cakmak, Associate Curator of Ancient Art at Saint Louis Art Museum; Ellen Gale, Executive Director Clayton Chamber of Commerce; Shelley Hagen, Corporate Art Resources at Wells Fargo; Leslie Markle, Curator of Public Art, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum; Kiku Obata, Founding Principal of Kiku Obata & Co.; Roseann Weiss, consultant with ART+; and design artist and illustrator Carlos Zamora. 

The Lambert Art and Culture Program builds upon the culturally rich legacy of St. Louis Lambert International Airport. The mission is to elevate the visitor experience and uplift regional pride through the presentation of artwork created by local, national, and international artists. Currently, there are nearly 30 works of art or collections of art (temporary, permanent or on-loan) on view at the Airport. For more information, visit www.artoftravelstl.com.