|Organization:||Regional Arts & Cultural Council|
|photo courtesy of Buster Simpson & Peg Butler|
In an ongoing initiative to enliven city landscapes, the Regional Arts and Cultural Council (RACC)’s public art division recently completed an art project that addresses sustainable green building solutions in Portland, OR. Featured in Public Art Network’s 2013 Year in Review, the site-integrated artwork Dekumstruction utilized recycled materials while sustaining new plantings.RACC partnered with Portland’s Bureau of Environmental Services as well as artists Buster Simpson and Peg Butler to develop the sculptural artwork that also functions as a much-needed and practical bike rack. Twenty halved oil barrel planters stenciled with the names of depleted oil fields and painted with an iridescent sheen allude to the culture of big oil. The sculpture also includes elevated planters with native species that are hydrated by water run-off from the adjacent property. All of the excess water flows through a downspout onto an upended oil barrel that quite literally “beats the drum” on rainy days.
Dekumstruction’s installation celebrates the replacement of two former car parking spaces with a multifunctional sculpture that accommodates ten bicycles and conveys shifting attitudes about consumption, energy, and storm water management. The entire project was constructed from a modest budget of $60,000 with grant funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and additional funds from the other partners.