Recent travels took me through the Denver Airport to transfer to another flight. The first flight was delayed and feeling stressed that I would not make the connection, I was annoyed to find that I had to board a train to transfer to the next terminal. The train left and entered a tunnel where my grumpy outlook was immediately changed to delight. Inside the tunnel were tiny shiny propellers mounted on the walls that twirled as the train moved through the tunnel. The electric blue lighting inside the train reflected onto the propellers, adding color to a fantastic public art installation.
The “Kinetic Air Light Curtain” was designed by husband and wife team, Antonette Rosato and William Maxwell in 1995. Although both artists have died in the past decade, their artwork is still fresh and continues to engage passengers. Both artists lived and worked in Denver and their design has meaning to the place: there are 5,280 propellers in the tunnel, which signifies the altitude of Denver, known as the ‘mile high city.’
Frequently we forget to savor the moment in time when we are amazed, delighted, intrigued or mystified by art. After I got on my connecting plane, I kept seeing those reflecting propellers around me on the runway, and thought of the power that artists have to elevate the mundane through art.