Sculptor Cliff Garten completes commission for a new public health facility in South Los Angeles


[pullquote_right]”When I first walked into the lobby, I saw the scale and had this vision for an illuminated piece. Because I create sculptures that respond directly to their environments, I felt that the illuminated quality of the sculpture would create a meditative, ethereal and uplifting experience for patients of the MLK Center for Public Health,” said Cliff Garten.[/pullquote_right]Sculptor Cliff Garten’s masterpiece Elevations (1) is on display at the Martin Luther King Jr. (MLK) Center for Public Health in Willowbrook. “Elevations (1)” is a seven-by-seven foot illuminated sculpture with a corresponding Venetian plaster wall that measures 12 feet wide and 22 feet tall. The white and black wall drawing mimics the curves of the sculpture and was applied using a stencil technique. A distressed finish was chosen for the wall’s surface to contrast to the precision of the lines, and metallic silver powder was added to the wall to create a silver sheen. The reflection of light on the wall’s surface illuminates the sculpture and enhances the visual interaction between the two elements.

Garten who is known to have the ability to connect people to places through sculptural material , social history and ecology ,has completed more than 50 artworks within the public realm throughout the U.S. and Canada. His aim is to activate and enliven public spaces, Elevation (1) is his first Los Angeles County civic art commission. “When I first walked into the lobby, I saw the scale and had this vision for an illuminated piece. Because I create sculptures that respond directly to their environments, I felt that the illuminated quality of the sculpture would create a meditative, ethereal and uplifting experience for patients of the MLK Center for Public Health,” said Garten, who has also donated a series of 10 archival digital prints that are displayed throughout the facility.