Washington, D.C. – May 21, 2014 - The Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE) is pleased to announce the newest addition to its Site-Specific Collection, a mural by artist Dorothea Rockburne at the U.S. Embassy in Kingston, Jamaica. Titled Folded Sky, Homage to Colin Powell, the work is 41-feet high by 16-feet wide, and depicts the sky over Jamaica on the night the former Secretary of State was born.
In 2009, the Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies commissioned Dorothea Rockburne to develop this piece honoring General Colin Powell and his family, who are originally from Jamaica. Instead of creating the work in-situ, Rockburne painted the mural in Queens, New York, at the Queens Museum of Art. The work will be installed in the atrium of the U.S. Embassy in Kingston, Jamaica, in May, and previewed in an official ceremony honoring the work on July 3.
“The wall painting details the position of the constellations over Jamaica on the night that Colin Powell was born, April 5, 1937. The painting explores the history of the painting of skies which depicts the connectedness of humankind, and celebrates celestial events throughout time,” said artist Dorothea Rockburne. “By creating beauty and honoring this remarkable man, we can learn from the heritage of other cultures and encourage conversation among nations. I feel great pride in having been chosen to do this.”
“The entire painting and installation process of Folded Sky, Homage to Colin Powell – painting the artwork in Queens, honoring General Powell, and installing the work at the Embassy in Kingston – exemplifies how art encourages cultural understanding of the United States abroad,” said FAPE Chairman Jo Carole Lauder. “FAPE is delighted to bring together artists and architects, as well as the public and private sectors, to create timeless artwork for permanent display in U.S. embassies around the world.“
The U.S. Embassy in Kingston was designed by John Chapman of Karn Charuhas Chapman & Twohey, and opened in 2006. Located on a nine-acre site, it is one of the largest U.S. consular offices in the world.
For FAPE’s Site-Specific Collection, the Foundation is assisted by an advisory committee of prominent arts professionals chaired by Robert Storr, Dean of the Yale School of Art. Once an artist has been selected and has agreed to create a work, the embassy architects, the State Department, and the artist work together to ensure that the art is sensitively integrated within the site. The works are all donated by the artists, and FAPE provides the funds to pay for their fabrication and installation.
About Dorothea Rockburne (American, born Canada, 1932)
Dorothea Rockburne attended Montreal Museum School from 1948 to 1950, and Black Mountain College, Asheville, North Carolina, from 1950 to 1954. Rockburne studied with renowned mathematician Max Dehn, and artists Philip Guston and Franz Kline. Her interests in the Golden Mean, astronomy, and cosmology, and her fascination with the ancient Egyptian use of proportion and light, have influenced the way she paints, cuts, draws, folds and calculates to create complex works of art built upon art historical, and mathematical foundations.
Selected museum exhibitions include: Dorothea Rockburne: Drawing Which Makes Itself, The Museum of Modern Art, NY (2013-14); Dorothea Rockburne: In My Mind’s Eye, Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, NY (2011); and Dorothea Rockburne, Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University (1989). Rockburne’s work is also included in numerous public and private collections, including: The Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, all in New York City; Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, NY; and the Yale University Art Gallery, among many others. Rockburne lives and works in New York City.
FAPE is the leading non-profit organization dedicated to providing permanent works of American art for U.S. embassies worldwide through site-specific commissions, original print and photography collections, preservation projects and other arts initiatives. It contributes to the U.S. Department of State’s mission of cultural diplomacy by partnering with American artists whose gifts encourage cross-cultural understanding within the diplomatic community and the international public. All artworks commissioned or placed by FAPE are gifts, representing the generosity and patriotism of some of the country’s greatest artists and donors. As of 2014, FAPE’s contributions include permanent works by more than 200 preeminent American artists placed in more than 140 countries.
FAPE was founded in 1986 by Leonore Annenberg, Wendy W. Luers, Lee Kimche McGrath and Carol Price. Its current leadership includes Chairman Jo Carole Lauder, President Eden Rafshoon, Vice President Darren Walker and Director Jennifer A. Duncan. A volunteer advisory committee chaired by Robert Storr, Dean of the Yale School of Art, selects and commissions all FAPE artists. FAPE underwrites the fabrication and installation, and is exclusively funded through individual, foundation and corporate donations. Further information about FAPE can be found at . Follow FAPE’s announcements, events and artists on Facebook.
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