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LOUISE NICHOLSON CARTER, IIDA, CHID, EDAC, RID,
PRINCIPAL OF SKYLINE ART SERVICES
The accessibility of digital technology has changed everything, everywhere, and
art for interior environments is no different. According to Carter, who worked as
a healthcare designer prior to joining Skyline Art Services in 1996, technology
is allowing art consultants to think differently about sourcing and production,
providing them with opportunities to create pieces that otherwise wouldn’t be
possible or financially viable. Technology is now a driving force in the art business,
influencing the collaboration between artists, designers, and consultants.
“Twenty years ago, art consultants were flipping through catalogues and
selecting pieces of art. You could only order what you saw. Now, the collaborative
process broadens the depth, diversity, and outcomes of our art projects,”
The accessibility and cost-effectiveness of customized art is converging
with a new wave of architects and designers who are more likely to begin
considering the art program for a project in the planning phase. Art consultants
like Carter help inform the interior architecture and play a more hands-on
role in determining creative opportunities and solutions for maintaining and
supporting art installations.
Carter’s work on the Saint Francis Health System illustrates this collaboration.
“Our team worked with Page Architects in Dallas and the health system’s art
committee. They had developed a concept involving a 50- by 10-feet area of
ceiling with glass platters in the main lobby,” said Carter. “We commissioned
over 300 glass platters with this gorgeous play of color and lighting. We had
to figure out how it could be cleaned and how they would access the lighting.
That’s serious integration with the structural side of the project, and it utilizes
our background even more. It’s a very exciting time to be in the art world.”
LAURA GRIGSBY, IIDA,
OWNER OF LAURA GRIGSBY ART CONSULTING
In the age of startups, a corporate workspace that embodies a brand is now paramount to many company cultures and design goals. Grigsby believes the key to
supporting that goal with art is by providing a visual interpretation of a company’s
brand. But that doesn’t have to mean plastering the logo on every wall, she said.
“The younger a company, the more ‘brand’ drives the conversation about
art selection,” said Grigsby, who provides art consulting services for technology
companies in Silicon Valley, in addition to other corporate and residential clients.
“They want to express the brand visually, and artwork can do that in a less
literal way than logos and other brand images.”
Art can be inspired and informed by a company’s values or mission state-
ment, and the selection process often includes a discussion with the marketing
or branding department to help better understand how the company sees
itself. But Grigsby maintains that art can and should communicate the brand
in a different way and offers an opportunity to do something unexpected. For
tech companies, this may mean finding artists who are inspired by science or
math or working in new, innovative mediums.
“Visual artists are innovators and creative thinkers, just like engineers or
entrepreneurs. But artists have a different language—color, shape, pattern,