Grand Park New: ‘Paper Airplane' Canopy

The whimsical new addition to the downtown space provides shade, beauty.

Looking up to admire whimsical things hovering above downtown? It's kind of getting to be the best and most beautiful sort of habit.

After all, "Liquid Shard," an undulating overhead wave from Poetic Kinetics, spent several days in early August glittering above Pershing Square, while colossal light projections cast upon City Hall are now a scintillating staple of New Year's Eve.

Now there are paper airplanes aloft over Olive Court at Grand Park, though they're not paper and they're not whizzing by the ear of an unsuspecting friend, as a hastily folded real-life paper airplane is often apt to do.

"Paper Airplane," a public art installation which made its grand Grand Park debut on Tuesday, Sept. 13, is both a treat for the eye and a way to escape the sun's intensity for a few minutes. That's right, like so many wonderful alfresco artworks, the piece serves a dual purpose, and serves it stylishly.

Regional artists Elenita Torres and Dean Sherriff proposed the nifty notion of an artwork that has some awning-like abilities. Their handy and handsome idea took the top spot in a design submission for the space (a space that's a bit east of the fountain and a bit west of the Performance Lawn, in a can't-be-missed spot).

Canvas Specialty made the shade-giving "Paper Airplane" from there, taking it right through to its completion, while Goldhirsh Foundation provided the funds through its LA2050 Grants Challenge, "which sought creative and innovative solutions to shape a better Los Angeles."

Fans of the park have been asking for "a place of shady respite," said Grand Park Director Lucas Rivera. "As a two-year installation, "Paper Airplane" is a springboard for incorporating additional pieces of public art into Grand Park," continued Mr. Rivera.

Will "Paper Airplane," like other local free-to-see and easily accessible artworks, become something of a social media star, much in the way that "Levitated Mass," the giant boulder "hovering" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, has gained photo fame?

It certainly seems as though the perfect place to fly a traditional paper airplane at, with a few snapshots to capture the moment.

Best stay tuned, stay shaded, and see this fun (and dual functional) new addition to Grand Park before it takes off again in two short years.

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