By Saori Ide and Johnathon Russel
Located at 1st Avenue and Strong Street
In 2016, the Brighton Cultural Arts Commission received funding for this project, generously provided by the City of Brighton, the Adams County Cultural Arts Council and the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District. A special thank you to the City of Brighton Parks and Recreation Department for their assistance with the project.
Objective: To create a landmark sculpture that is visible from a distance. One that welcomes residents and visitors alike and celebrates the environment as well as pays homage to the city's agricultural background. With that in mind, this monumental sculpture celebrates the beautiful landscape that surrounds the city of Brighton. The intertwining colors and forms, as they move with the wind, describe the surrounding Colorado landscape as it rises from the rich soil of the valleys to the bright summits of the Colorado Rockies (Brown - "earth and soil", Green - "grass and mountains", Blue - "rivers and rain", Orange/Ocher - "Autumn fields", Pink/Red - "Spring flowers", Light Blue - "sky", Yellow - "sun". The wind stimulates graceful movements that establish an instant bonding between the artwork and the viewers and also simulates the twirling cultural heritage dance seen in the southwest region. On the base of the sculpture are internally illuminated designs of the South Platte River and the railroad, both were, and continue to be, so important to the growth and development of Brighton, bringing life and vitality to the city. The depiction of the agricultural iconography of the region commemorates the past and pays tribute to the strong agricultural history that became the foundation of the city. At night, both the river (blue) and the railroad (red) are illuminated with LED Lighting along with the ground up-lighting. This ensures a nighttime presence and visibility from the highway nearby.
About the artists: Jonathan Russell grew up in the Boston area and graduated from the Massachusetts College of Art, majoring in sculpture. After traveling extensively in Europe, he moved to the Bay Area and established his art studio, Red Metal Arts, in San Francisco. He founded and operated JR Casting Co. and has been teaching sculpture classes at Academy of Art University in San Francisco for more than 10 years. Saori Ide Russell, born in Japan, graduated from the University of New Mexico with an emphasis on sculpture and installation art. After finishing her studies, she moved to San Francisco. In addition to her own studio work, she founded Saori Russell Fine Art consulting company where she works with designers, architects, and property owners. Her professional work includes conceptual design, reading blue prints, presentation, budgeting, and overseeing and managing projects.