Scottsdale Public Art


All art in public is at risk—graffiti, pollution, bird droppings, and water damage are just a few examples of elements that can have a negative impact on an artwork regardless of material.

We work hard to maintain Scottsdale’s Public Art Collection comprised of nearly 100 public artworks in addition to over 800 portable works found in city-owned buildings, preserving the city’s cultural heritage for future generations. Each year, Scottsdale Public Art identifies artworks requiring attention, developing a priority list of projects based upon the condition of the artwork and other factors.

The art in the Scottsdale Public Art’s care must be maintained by trained professionals who understand the inherent characteristics of the materials they are made of.

Current Project: 2017 Conservation of James Turrell’s skyspace, Knight Rise

Scottsdale Public Art’s commissioned skyspace by James Turrell, called Knight Rise, 2001 at SMoCA is closed for maintenance, January 4 to 13, 2017. The last time we closed the work for maintenance of this magnitude was over 10 years ago.

In 2006, we had to completely replace the oculus and ceiling of Knight Rise, because the steel that made up the oculus had a vastly different expansion/contraction rate than the drywall ceiling inside, and the seam between the two materials was a constant repair problem. To solve this, we completely replaced it with a continuous hard foam material, which was covered in a vinyl based concrete, and painted white.

This year, we are working on the roof (the part nobody sees above and around the oculus) and repairs to the oculus. Ten years of Arizona’s blistering summer heat, monsoon rains and winter freezes have taken their toll on all the materials involved. We look forward to reopening Knight Rise when the work is finished.

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