A new pandemic-themed art exhibit has been unveiled at Long Beach Airport (LGB). The exhibition by local women artists, commissioned by a partnership between the airport and the Arts Council for Long Beach (ARTSLB), reflects uplifting and hopeful messages related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Long Beach has an amazing well of artistic talent,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “This new and very relevant exhibit at the airport will inspire travelers and showcase our thriving arts community.”
Titled “We Got This: Art in the Time of the Pandemic,” 20 pieces were chosen for display, with artists receiving a $500 honorarium for each piece selected by a panel consisting of representatives from LGB and ARTSLB. The selected works express hope, shared community, respect for frontline workers and an acknowledgement of the challenges ahead. The exhibit title comes from a piece submitted by the artist known as Ms. Yellow (Nuria Ortiz) that explores physical and emotional distance during the pandemic.
The artwork was printed and installed on large construction barriers in public, highly trafficked areas of the Airport and will stay up for at least six months. An online version of the exhibit is available here.
“We are so pleased to display this impressive array of art at LGB for travelers and the public,” said Airport Director Cynthia Guidry. “It is a wonderful opportunity to show our support for the local arts community, while spreading encouragement and a sense of optimism with our travelers and the public.”
The focus on artists who are women is part of ARTSLB’S community work with LB Suffrage 100 in commemorating the centennial anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote. Funding for the project was provided by the airport’s allocation of the City’s Percent for the Arts Program, which sets aside one percent of capital construction funds for the arts. In coordination with ARTSLB’s Keep Arts Working program, this exhibition highlights COVID-19’s impact on the arts community.
“We are so thankful to Long Beach Airport for partnering with us to commission such a timely exhibit and promote local women artists,” said Griselda Suarez, Executive Director for the Arts Council for Long Beach. “These artists are proud representatives of our city, and the work portrays the strength our community has shown through this pandemic and hope for the future.”
LGB has instituted a number of measures to enhance passenger safety, including physical distancing, new disinfecting protocols and a face covering requirement. Read more about these measures, and check out a video of what it’s like to fly through LGB with the current precautions. The airport boasts one of the few outdoor concourses in the nation, offering travelers the opportunity to enjoy the fresh air while they wait for their flight.
Image credit: Power of Music by Emilie Kirkpatrick