Art Proposal for the People Mover at the Terminal A,
Houston International Airport, by Hana Hillerova, Spring 2009




“Houston, can you hear me?”  -  Sculpture in the city that sends people to the stars.

The Idea

While walking and moving on the escalators of the people mover at the international airport in the Space City, the passengers become astronauts traveling through space. The colorful lightweight sculptures of ‘Stars’ are suspended on cables with swivels and therefore gently move and rotate with the air currents in the people mover. A passenger experiences each ‘Star’ as if he or she were orbiting through a galaxy. Passengers are instantly reminded of where they are: Houston, the city known for being instrumental in the exploration of the outer space.

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The Materials and Technical Description

The technical support for the design of the sculptures in provided by the fabricator, Blumenthal Sheet Metal of Houston.

The installation consists of 24 lightweight ‘Star’ sculptures made of 0.080 - 5052 aluminum. The surface of these is powder-coated. The sculptures vary in size from 3 to 8 feet in diameter. The base of each star is a steel icosahedron welded from 3/8 inch aluminum plate. To this structural base, the colorful aluminum ‘rays’ are bolted by T316 Stainless steel acorn bolts. The swivels are welded to the bases of the sculptures and clamped to the hanging wires. The ‘rays’ have a 5 degree bend length-wise in the center for structural support. Each ‘Star’ consists of 30 rays weighing around 1.5 to 2.5 pounds each, depending on the size/diameter of the sculpture. The total weight of the largest ‘Star’ (8 feet in diameter) does not exceed 100 pounds per hanging point, including the hanging hardware. The smallest, 3 foot ‘Stars’, weigh about 40 pounds each.