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Thursday, February 9, 2012

New Haven nabs 2nd place in Top 100 Public Spaces in the U.S. and Canada

NEW HAVEN — “Square with four circles,” Swiss artist Felice Varini’s optical illusional work that uses the Temple Garage as its canvas, has won second place in a national contest to determine the Top 100 Public Spaces in the U.S. and Canada.
The award, conducted by Planetizen.com and the Project for Public Spaces, was announced in a press release Tuesday by the New Haven Parking Authority, which operates the facility.
The project was a 2010 collaboration among Site Projects Inc., the City of New Haven and the parking authority in 2010.
Site Projects commissioned the artist to create the mural, which was his first large-scale anamorphic wall mural in the U.S. The first place designation went to The Circle in Uptown Normal, Ill.
The work stretches from the walkway next to the Ann Taylor store, through Temple Plaza and onto the circular exit ramp of the garage. It is best viewed just at the edge of the walkway from Chapel Street looking toward the garage.
It was created as part of the revitalization of that central downtown area and pedestrian plaza, which is bordered by the Shubert Theater, several restaurants, entertainment venues and a residential building.
The work is estimated to have been seen by more than 100,000 people, generating more than 13,000 hits on Site Projects’ Flickr account. It has also received publicity in local, regional and international publications.
A smaller Varini artwork, “Three black circles in air’, is still up for viewing in the New Haven Free Public Library until the middle of this month.
Tours of the Varini artwork in Temple Plaza can be arranged by contacting info@siteprojects.org.

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