Looks closely into the eyes of this crazed, demon-possessed horse, and you tell me if you feel all warm and fuzzy as you drive into the Denver International Airport (DIA).
A 'nearly Satanic' creation
If you have visited DIA recently you have had the opportunity to take in the city's latest art acquisition, the big blue horse.
Two years ago a part of the beast fell on Mr. Jimenez in his studio injuring him fatally. The memories of my Judeo-Christian, God-fearing upbringing may have faded over the years but I am a firm believer in signs and they don't come much clearer than this one; maybe the City of Denver just wasn't meant to have an off-color stallion gracing the entry to its world class airport.
Metallic azure is certainly appropriate for a mustang as long as it has four wheels and a big engine. On a sculpture it makes you worry about what else the artist might have had in mind.
Its nostrils and mane flare maniacally as if it senses a lightning storm in the area. Then there are the eyes, red, penetrating and of all things, illuminated. They glare from the darkness while the entire piece is lit from below. The overall effect is disturbing if not downright frightening.
All that's missing is Ichabod Crane hanging on waving his hat. If you are superstitious you could take this as a sign that you should possibly reconsider boarding that fuel-laden, 500 mph, 100 ton, plastic and aluminum airship.
Its location is also troublesome; the median of the access road just as it turns into the airport (or conversely just as you are leaving, turning west on Pena Boulevard). Coming in you may first notice it on the horizon a mile or so away. As you get closer the color becomes apparent and then you see the eyes. They appear almost satanic.
Most public art is meant to be approached and respectfully contemplated from some nearby vantage point. That's not possible with this work. Its location along a road to a major U.S. airport makes it strictly verboten.
If you slow down you risk being rear-ended by some business person wringing the last minutes out of the day before getting on a plane to Fresno. God forbid you should stop to gawk. Homeland Security will be all over you like a cheap white shirt. "Why did you park here, don't you know it's illegal?"
"I'm just admiring the sculpture."
"How do we know you're not surveilling it?"
"You know, getting the layout as part of plot to blow it up."
"Yeah, I see your point."
So this must be in the category of drive-by art, meant to be appreciated out of the corner of your eye in heavy traffic at 60 miles per hour. As a footnote, for visitors to our fair city leaving the airport the spectacle is muted. The thing faces the other direction and the lighting favors the front side. They are treated to an unexpected large blue horse's patoot.
Controversial projects often die in the concept stage. If they survive through budget approval they get a life of their own and become difficult to stop. In the case of the blue bear at the convention center (what is it with our fascination for outsized blue creatures), it was a good thing. The big lug peeking curiously through the glass is whimsical, fun not so with a 35 foot high crazed-looking steed.
In 1992 Mayor Webb was just starting his 12 year reign and perhaps someone convinced him that a rearing horse would be a legacy piece. It might well be, just not quite what he had in mind.
source - Denver Post