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Airports As Art Galleries? London Says Yes
Best known for his design of the album cover for the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Blake has had international appeal for decades. Unveiling his new London-inspired collection, Blake has created works for each terminal that celebrate all that is great about London, while welcoming visitors.
Being installed in Gatwick's North and South terminals, the permanent installation shows London through the ages with more than just a photo here or a sculpture there. The collection promises to immerse passengers from the time they get off the plan until they claim their luggage.
Separate from ongoing efforts to upgrade airport operations, the idea came from an airport passenger panel that wanted visitors or those returning from holidays to get a real sense of arrival in Britain.
Some other airports with great art?
Denver International Airport has permanent art exhibits, including a 32-foot-tall, bright blue, fiberglass horse sculpture with gleaming red eyes called "Mustang." The 9000-pound work comes from New Mexico artist Luis Jiménez.
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport has a collection that depicts messages of world peace, community and friendship. Organized by The Colorful Art Society, Inc. and People to People International, the collection changes on a rotating basis.
Philadelphia International Airport also rotates its collection, established in 1998 as an exhibition program on display throughout its terminals. Called their Art In The Airport program, it provides visitors from around the world access to a wide variety of art from the Philadelphia area.
Here's more on airport art, including the collection at Washington's Reagan National Airport:
[Photo Credit: Flickr user scorzonera]