More on Lift Off

The Lift Off sculpture installation is nearing completion despite being surrounded by caution tape. The lighting at the end of each of the horizontal beams appears to be the major outstanding item remaining.

Responses to this new artwork have been mixed. Fellow K at City Vista residents have comically started calling it “Big Bird” with one individual saying “if we don’t feed it maybe it will fly away.” Perhaps it will become landmark in DC like The Big Chicken is a point of reference for driving directions in the Atlanta area.

My condo listserv has been flooded with comments and jokes about the sculpture. And despite some negative feedback, someone pointed out that the new artwork is a great distraction from the strip club and parking lot at the 5th and K intersection.

Personally, I’m not a fan of the color (especially with a similar-colored building in the background), but overall I’m happy with the artwork and thrilled that the Master Plan is being implemented. I’d like to remind our readers that public art displays are part of the Mount Vernon Triangle Master Plan, which also includes the decorative grate artwork scheduled for installation in the coming months. While many of us were not yet residents of The Triangle in the spring of 2007, there was a two day community panel during which the artwork was selected.

What are your thoughts?

Image Credit: DCMud

Editor’s note: The MVT CID has published a press release on the sculpture.

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  1. 1

    John Thompson says

    As a fan of public art and a City Vista resident, I'm really happy to see this finally installed! It's a great addition to the block.

    My only wish would have been for a different color. I (as well) think that a yellow sculpture against a yellow building isn't very appealing & that they wash each other out. Don't get me wrong, I think the color is great on it's own, very happy & cheerful – but I would have gone for a primary blue, a red, an orange or a primary green vs. the yellow. Ah – opinions – we all have em. :)

    Thanks to everyone responsible for planning & implementing public art into my neighborhood's master plan! Hopefully, this will become the standard for DC neighborhoods!!

  2. 2

    FourthandEye says

    I agree with John that the color is the biggest disappointment. I can't decide in the yellow reminds me more of Caterpillar Construction equipment or of the yellow posts and fare gates you see in a mall parking garage. A blue paint job could radically improve my perception of the piece.

  3. 3

    Adam says

    Yes, indeed this looks like an unfinished construction project, or a bug from Kafka's Metamorphosis. Not happy at all with it, although in theory, having a sculpture is a good idea. Is this here for good? I can't believe that Andy would allow a sculpture to so obscure the neon lights of Busboys that you see walking up 5th Street, to me it was an oasis of light after walking down the east side of 5th (where 5th & I project will be).

  4. 4

    Anonymous says

    I agree. In theory a sculpture is a great idea. In practice, this is a terrible addition. The color is awful. The design itself is obnoxious and out of place. It seems like too much of an attempt to be artsy when something classy would have been a much better fit. Personally, I thought the corner was a perfect location for a nice fountain. If it were possible to petition this sculpture I'd be the first one to be on board.

  5. 5

    FrenchTwistDC says

    Definitely agree that I like looking at the sculpture better than at Louis' Rogue bar across the street 😉

  6. 6

    washingtonydc says

    I'm a fan. While the yellow is a bit off, in my opinion, I love that this sculpture is also functional. I am confident that in half a year from now, people will have moved past the criticism and instead find themselves using it as a meeting place. It will help add just the type of energy we went in the neighborhood.

  7. 7

    si says

    its certainly interesting and conversation provoking just like our neighborhood. I'm happy its a crazy bright yellow bug like thing that gets people talking. The more art the better!

  8. 8

    tim says

    I actually gagged when I saw this first monstrosity the first time, followed by uncontrollable laughter. I was going to Busboys and was promptly seated facing directly out the window looking at it. It actually ruined my meal.

    I'm very pro-modern and public art, but don't kid yourself, the strip club is less of an eyesore.

  9. 9

    Red Machine says

    I am going to hold my comments until the scaffolding and tape come off, the light "nubs" go on, and they (hopefully) paint over the welding spots.

  10. 10

    Sandy Underpants says

    very very very very useful art, as in "I'll meet you by the yellow piece of crap" "right".