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New public art installation will transform the walls of the Moss Arts Center Grand Lobby

January 26, 2016

Cooper mural sketch
A preliminary sketch of a portion of the mural for the Moss Arts Center Grand Lobby created by artist Diana Cooper. Image courtesy of the artist.

A new public art installation commissioned by the Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech will traverse the Moss Arts Center Grand Lobby walls with imagery inspired by the intersection of creativity, art, and technology. 

The mural will be unveiled on Thursday, Feb. 11, at 5:30 p.m. with an introduction by Ruth Waalkes, associate provost for the arts at Virginia Tech and executive director of the Center for the Arts, followed by an informal talk by the artist, Diana Cooper.

The event is free and open to the public and will be held in the Moss Arts Center Grand Lobby, located at 190 Alumni Mall.

Cooper’s mural imagery unfolds as a complexity of line and geometric form flow, intersecting and surging across the wall surface. This dynamic work of art suggests networks, flowcharts, circuit boards, architectural drawings, and infrastructures, as well as both the micro-dimensions of cellular structures and the infinite, ever-expanding structures underlying the laws of mathematics and physics.

Among the many sources of Cooper’s inspiration for this project is the architecture of the Moss Arts Center, as well as the missions of the two programs housed in the building — the Center for the Arts and the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology. The arts, technology, science, math, and creativity all coalesce in this expansive and inventive representation of complex systems, infrastructures, and abstract data.

Cooper is a nationally acclaimed artist based in New York City and her work has been exhibited in the United States, Europe, and China. Her most recent work, “Double Take,” is a new 8 feet high by 96 feet wide permanent wall installation in mosaic, ceramic, granite, and steel on Roosevelt Island in New York City commissioned by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.

The mural unveiling and artist talk is part of a series of exhibition openings and activities to celebrate the Center for the Arts' newest suite of exhibitions, “DATAStream,” which explores the use of digital technologies as a medium for creative expression.

The other “DATAStream” exhibitions opening throughout the month of February include computer-generated imagery by John F. Simon Jr. (opening, Feb. 4), software art by Casey Reas (opening Feb. 18), an audiovisual installation by Quayola (opening Feb. 18), and paintings by Philip Argent (opening Feb. 25).

The exhibitions are curated by Margo Ann Crutchfield, curator at large, Center for the Arts.

The center’s galleries’ regular hours are Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The mural can be viewed in the Moss Arts Center Grand Lobby during regular building hours, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The galleries and all related events are free and open to the public.

Parking is available in the North End Parking Garage on Turner Street. Virginia Tech faculty and staff possessing a valid Virginia Tech parking permit can enter and exit the garage free of charge. Limited street parking is also available. Parking on Alumni Mall is free on weekdays after 5 p.m. and on weekends.

If you are an individual with a disability and desire an accommodation, please contact Kacy McAllister at 540-231-5300 or email kmcallis@vt.edu during regular business hours at least 10 business days prior to an event.

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