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Trend Watch January 2021

The rise of functional art: Public art can blend both form and function, blurring boundaries between the street object and the outcome people get from their engagement with it.  Making art an everyday experience is integral to some of the best public spaces and cities around the world. The right mix of permanent or temporary installations can reflect identity and create vibrancy in an area. The artsy bus shelter pictured above (left) offers a playful and engaging option for those seeking transportation. And the water droplet shape – pictured above right – first appears to be a sculpture, but on closer inspection reveals itself to be a water fountain for refilling drink bottles.  The design of the fountain – called the O fountain – is courtesy of Melbourne based ‘O …

  • 19 jan 2021
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In Profile: Claudia Gee Vassar

Houston’s first botanic garden opened in September 2020, in the middle of a pandemic, offering locals a green escape from the confines of their living spaces into 132 acres of living museum. Some 2.5 miles of walking trails guide visitors along a bayou meander and through six outdoor gallery spaces displaying a collection of tropical, sub-tropical and arid plants from around the world to showcase the biodiversity that thrives along the Texas Gulf Coast. Claudia Gee Vassar, President and General Counsel of the Garden, joined the institution’s long journey towards establishment (18 years from nonprofit formation to opening day) in 2016. She shares her insights with StreetChat about the creation and growth of a very rare thing in 2020: a brand-new botanic garden. 1. What inspires you? I am inspired …

  • 18 jan 2021
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