‘Surface’, the new public art installation by Artist Ivan Toth Depeña
Ivan Toth Depeña’s Surface is a new permanent, public art installation commissioned by the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS). Designed in collaboration with the REDLINE Design Group, Surface is located in the Cornelius Park and Ride comfort station.
Depeña’s installation creates a rich visual and experiential public space, enlivening the busy commuter thoroughfare and immersing users in an abstract bath of light. As Mayor Chuck Travis remarks, “This is the coolest park and ride in all of CATS.”
The three dimensional, colored glass installation was inspired by nearby Lake Norman. Depeña used actual underwater topographic data from the lake to recreate the abstracted experience of looking up through the surface of the water. Depeña builds on this experience by directing the light to cascade and refract color on the surfaces of the structure. These colors echo the topography of the lake, with the blues and greens of the water and the orange of the Carolina clay from the lakebed. This dynamic play of light and color to the site shifts with the movement of the sun, allowing patrons to enjoy a colorful, changing experience.
The collaboration with REDLINE allowed the underlying concept to develop seamlessly from studio sketches to final construction. Calling into play his education and architectural experience, Depeña was actively involved in designing the structure that surrounds the glass art component. The resulting contemporary design incorporates a cantilevered awning to function as shelter for riders, but also fuses with the art installation. The positioning of the angled sculptural centerpiece aligns directly with the polar coordinates (North, South, East and West) and the size and angle of the canopy takes advantage of the angles of the sun throughout the day. This harmonious blend of art, architecture & native vernacular not only gives riders shelter from their environment, but also connects them to their environment.