Blue Mustang has been deemed an eye sore by Rachel Hultin-- a real estate developer in Denver. The 32-foot sculpture of a wild mustang was the final work of artist Luis Jimenez. In fact, it was finished by his sons after Jimenez was killed during a studio accident involving the sculpture in 2006. The finished sculpture was installed at the Denver International Airport in 2008. Though commissioned the fiberglass sculpture is considered by many to be a tribute to Jimenez’s career and passion for art. However, there are some individuals who do not see Blue Mustang in the same light.
Articles in the Denver Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Ruidoso News report on a petition that has been circulating due to individuals who desire to see Blue Mustang removed. Rachel Hultin is the spearhead of the petition-- having created a Facebook page, Bye Bye Blue Mustang, in order to rally support for the removal of the sculpture. It has been stated that Hultin would like to see Blue Mustang dismantled or moved to a less prominent location.
Hultin and her supporters view the sculpture as “fiendish” and “heinous”. However, their appreciation -- or should I say lack thereof -- of Blue Mustang does not position well with what Jimenez intended the sculpture to represent. After all, Jimenez desired for Blue Mustang to represent the spirit of Denver-- a vision that is supported by airport officials and the director of the Denver Office of Cultural Affairs. In fact, Erin Trapp-- the director-- has stated that the sculpture will not be able to be removed until 2013 due to a city policy that protects commissioned installations like Blue Mustang.
The sculpture was commissioned in 1992. Luis Jimenez was allocated $300,000 in funding. However, the cost of creating and stalling the controversial sculpture doubled before it was unveiled to the public in 2008. It was finished by the artists sons-- Adan and Orion Jimenez. Needless to say, Rachel Hultin and her supporters may try to press on the issue regardless of city policy.
Consider this an open debate about public commissioned art. Should citizens have a stronger voice in how their money is spent? Should the public be allowed to vote for or against commissions that are intended to reflect the values of their city or state? Do you see art funding of this nature wasteful? Or vital? Should Blue Mustang have extra protection due to the tragic death of Luis Jimenez? What are your thoughts?
Links of Interest:
Sculpture that killed artist controversial -- Ruidoso News
Denver Airport's Blue Mustang Draws Wild Reaction
Take care, Stay true,Brian Sherwin
New York Art Exchange