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Let There Be Clouds

Reflecting on the LA Aqueduct in Santa Ana

Dec. 11, 2013

As the Los Angeles Aqueduct celebrates its 100-year anniversary this month, many art institutions and organizations are showing support in their exhibition programming. Grand Central Art Center (GCAC) in downtown Santa Ana erected a monumental installation in commemoration of the centennial birthday.

The Art Center invited artists Matthew Moore and Braden King to collaborate together on this abstract and environmentally inspired installation piece. The result is a massive installation that lives and breathes in the human experience, much like the Aqueduct itself. King and Moore chose to explore, examine and reflect upon the impact of the Los Angeles Aqueduct in a visceral experience inside the dark room of the center’s main gallery. The exhibition is part of a 16-institution initiative funded through the Metabolic Studio’s Chora Council Grants, in conjunction with the Aqueduct’s centennial.

The site-specific installation, titled “Cumulus,” is a culmination of a double residency that allowed for multiple site visits and time to talk and travel all across the length of the Aqueduct. The project is an attempt to tell the story of this 100-year old engineering marvel that was dedicated on Nov. 5, 1913, when thousands gathered northeast of Los Angeles to mark the opening. After Los Angeles used up all their own water sources, William Mulholland—the man in charge of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power—started looking around for alternative sources. LA acquired land rights in the neighboring valleys, and built an efficient and gravity-powered transportation system for the Owens Valley’s water source. Without the water from the aqueduct, LA would not exist.

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Tags:  Media