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A Meeting of Artistic Minds at Anaheim Sites : Project: The three artists chosen to draw up a major public art program downtown are gathering to investigate their 16-acre canvas.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Three artists chosen to implement a major public art program for Koll Anaheim Center, a $200-million mixed-use commercial project on 16 downtown acres, convene today for a two-day intensive session.

Daniel Martinez and Nobuho Nagasawa of Los Angeles and Buster Simpson of Seattle will be investigating the designated sites for the project and meeting with public officials.

The artists, selected by a three-member jury, were approved by the Arts Advisory Committee appointed in June by the Anaheim Redevelopment Agency.

A fourth, recommended artist, well-known New York sculptor Mary Miss, toured Anaheim last week but won’t know until next week whether she’ll have time to work on the project.

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“We’ve got candles burning for Mary, and we’re hoping she’ll be able to do it,” said Marc Pally, project art consultant. Pally said it has not been determined whether another artist would be chosen if Miss is unavailable.

Members of the jury were Jessica Cusick, arts administrator of the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission; Maudette Ball, administrative director of the Urban Arts Program at Foothill Ranch in Saddleback Valley; and Linda Forsha, curator at the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art.

The nine members of the Advisory Committee represent the property owners and community organizations, including the Anaheim Arts Council and its Art in Public Places Committee. The art world is represented by Cal State Fullerton art gallery director Dextra Frankel.

The budget for the first phase of the art program--based on 1% of hard construction costs for the 200,000-square-foot Pacific Bell building and the 225,000-square-foot City Utilities Building--is estimated to be between $350,000 and $500,000.

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The area in question is bounded by Lincoln Avenue, Broadway, and Anaheim and Harbor boulevards.

According to the “Art Plan” drawn up last month by Pally, consulting artist Mark Lere and the Arts Advisory Committee, the artists will be working on several projects intended to encourage pedestrian use, enliven the area by day and by night, and be integrated with the architecture and landscape design.

In addition to free-standing sculpture, the artist-designed elements will include such objects as drinking or decorative fountains, benches, trash receptacles, pavement ornamentation and lighting.

One of the major art components is a “festivities center” at the western end of the center, envisioned as a gathering place for daily use as well as special events.

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The Art Plan suggests three possibilities for the site: a distinctive landscape, a stage for performances, or a combination of both, plus a marker commemorating “the ongoing history of Anaheim.”

Schematic and working drawings for the first phase of the art program will be drawn up this winter and spring, according to Charlotte Edmondson of the Anaheim Redevelopment Agency. Installation of the art is scheduled for next summer.


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