Friday 7th September 2012

OLD FART and the Blue Horse another Alien Mystery? Or just another artist being ripped off?

New Mexican artist Luis Jiminez must have been inspired by OLD FART’s Moms horse for sure.

Moms horse was and is no where near as costly as Luis Jiminez’s work and is just as impressive.

Also it appeared on the 4th plinth in One and Other.

And Behold a Big Blue Horse? Many in Denver Just Say Neigh

DENVER — Airports can be tense and testy places in the best of times. At Denver International Airport, you can add glow-in-the-dark eyes to the list of triggers for a traveler’s angst.

male horse — electric-eyed, cobalt blue and anatomically correct — was installed in February 2008 on the roadway approach to the terminal, and it is freaking more than a few people out.

ALf says its all a load of American Mumbo Jumbo as usual.

Haters of this work say that “Blue Mustang,” as it is formally known, by the artist Luis Jiménez (killed in 2006 when a section of the 9,000-pound fiberglass statue fell on him during construction), is frightening, or cursed by its role in Mr. Jiménez’s death, or both. Supporters say the 32-foot-tall horse is a triumph, if only as a declaration of Denver’s courage to go beyond easy-listening-style airport art that many cities use like visual Dramamine to soothe travelers’ nerves.

Love it or loathe it, though, “Blue Mustang” is doing what art is supposed to do — get attention. There’s even a poetry slam planned in Denver to read horse haikus, of which about 250 have been composed, believe it or not.

“It’s definitely achieved its purpose of being memorable,” said Rachel Hultin, a real-estate broker in Denver who started a page on FACEBOOK last month to vent her horse anxieties, byebyebluemustang.com, and found herself at the center of the debate.

Ms. Hultin, who said she started the campaign partly on a whim, “after a few drinks with friends,” also suggested on her page that people post comments in haiku form. Denver residents and travelers who had formed an opinion about the statue while passing through, leapt at the challenge. To wit:

Anxiously I fly
apocalyptic hell beast
fails to soothe my nerves.

Local artists and city public art administrators say “Blue Mustang” has stirred a deeper debate too, about Denver itself, and what sort of image it wants to communicate. Is “Blue Mustang” an echo of the city’s high-plains bronco-busting past? Or a mocking denunciation of the Old West conventions? Or is it just strange?

“People can’t put their finger on what’s it’s conveying,” said Joni Palmer, who is finishing a doctoral dissertation on politics and public art in Denver. “It’s the strangeness that really unnerves people — this mix of things.”

As another of the haiku writers put it:

Big blue horse beckons
Fiery, red eyes glowering
Good bye one horse town.

The airport’s public-art administrator, Matt Chasansky, said airport settings carry fundamentally different psychological baggage than ordinary urban spaces. Like most public art in Denver, he said, the statue was paid for by developers who are required to contribute 1 percent of the cost of major capital projects to public art.

“We don’t want the work to convey things that would make people uncomfortable about flying,” Mr. Chasansky said. No art, for example, would be commissioned with a violent theme. But art that is too soothing, he said, is probably in the end just bad art.

“Quality works of public art are not the works that are completely gentle,” he said.

Yet the specific setting of “Blue Mustang” has evolved since it was commissioned in the 1990s, changing how the work is perceived.

The original design called for a pull-off from the airport road, with benches and ample room to contemplate the statue from all angles. After the terrorist attacks of 9/11, however, the parking area idea was shelved for security reasons.

That makes “Blue Mustang” literally unapproachable: most viewers zoom by, perhaps retaining only a vague impression. The barriers to approach, artists and art critics say, have compounded the piece’s troubles, making it seem even more forbidding by virtue of isolation.

“There’s no location to be able to get intimate with the work,” said Lawrence Argent, an artist in Denver. “It’s a vista from afar, and to many it’s a frightening vista from afar.”

Mr. Argent knows about distant vistas — and outsize animals too. He is best known in Denver for creating a two-story blue bear that peers into a window of the ColoradoConvention Center, called “I See What You Mean.” Last fall he received a commission for an installation at SacramentoInternationalAirport in California for a 56-foot-long red rabbit. When the piece is installed as part of a planned airport expansion, the fiberglass rabbit will appear to be leaping through the terminal into a giant suitcase.

Ms. Hultin, meanwhile, who got the ball rolling with her antihorse Facebook page, has changed her mind. She no longer wants “Blue Mustang” removed, as she once did. (City policy holds that public art pieces are left in place for five years, anyway, and officials have given no sign of budging.)

She now thinks that pamphlets at the airport, and maybe education courses for airport bus drivers, could lead viewers into a deeper understanding of the horse and the artist, she said, notwithstanding that she had been called “every name in the book” by defenders of the statue.

“In the process of being personally attacked through e-mail, and through learning more about the piece, I’ve shifted gears from, ‘I don’t think it’s appropriate,’ to ‘Let’s try and understand it,’ ” she said.

But the controversy has also stirred up people in other ways. Conspiracies have floated around the Internet for years about secret bunkers or caverns beneath the terminals at the Denver airport. Symbols of Freemasonry are also said to abound on airport floors and walls.

“It’s brought out the conspiracy theorists who think there are aliens living under the airport,” said Patricia Calhoun, the editor of Westword, an alternative weekly paper in Denver that is helping organize a “Blue Mustang” poetry slam in April to share horse haiku as part of National Poetry Month.

Meet The Mustang, haunted killer blue horse sculpture of doom

The Mustang will be the first and last thing you see at DIA.

Nicknamed “Blucifer” and “DIAblo,” The Mustang is a 32-foot-tall, neon blue sculpture of a raging steed that is currently located on a hill south of the airport along Pena Boulevard. It’s the first thing travelers see after the many miles of near empty prairie driving out to the airport, and the last thing new arrivals will witness before heading to the city.

El Mesteno is the latest piece of public art at the airport to explode into controversy, so this blog will have continuing posts on the beautifully frightening beast as time goes on. But here’s the quick and dirty back story:

1992. The DIA art committee granted New Mexican artist Luis Jiminez a $300,000 commission to create the sculpture, three years before the airport would finally open. Paid $165,000 upfront .

Jiminez misses the original 1994 deadline for the work. A cornea transplant he’d gotten twenty years before had begun to deteriorate, and some people speculated that the piece would never be completed

City grants Jiminez several extent ions, but the dates were never met with completion.

2003.   The city files a lawsuit against Jimenez for the $165,000 it had paid up front, but agreed to drop the suit if the sculpture was finished by the end of the year. Sculpture not completed.

June 13, 2006. Jiminez was by himself in his studio rushing to finish the nearly-completed Mustang. He was reportedly using a rope to hoist a section of the sculpture into place so it could be welded. The hoist broke and the piece fell on the 66-year-old, pinning him to the ground and slicing an artery in his leg. Jiminez died on his studio floor.

In late 2007, the city was informed that Jiminez’s family was now working to complete the sculpture. It arrived in Denver in February 2008. The formal dedication ceremony was June 12, attended by several members of the City Council, Jiminez family and Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper. The sculpture is appraised at a value of $2 million.

January 2009. A local realtor named Rachel Hultin starts a Facebook group called“”DIA’s Heinous Blue Mustang Has Got to Go,” and over a thousand people sign up as members. The debate over the Mustang exploded into a national news story, with many people calling the sculpture “a killer,” frightening and out of place. The city maintians it will not review moving the sculpture for several years.

The sculpture becomes a subject of interest for ghost hunters and paranormal researchers examining the “haunted” claims.

Holistic healers begin to wonder if the Mustang has connection to the Blue Star Kachina, a Hopi prophecy.

Others say that the Mustang bears incredible resembalance to the horse witnessed by men unwillingly subjected to time travel travel experiments in the Montauk Project, aka The Philidelphia Experiment.

The symbol for the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Kentucky was Lex the blue horse .

Curiously similar to the Blue Horse that was OLD FART’s moms that appeared on the 4th plinth in Trafalgar Square in 2009.

OLD FART got no recognition for what was obviously his inspiration for Lex The Blue Kentucky Horse as Moms Blue Horse was beamed world wide in October 2009 via Sky Arts.

Also Bish had created the Blue Horse Artwork in 2007 well before The Blue Mustang even lets give credit where credit is due.

One Response to “Friday 7th September 2012”

  1. You were indeed the first – you should link to the youtube vid.

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