Sacramento Jet Center “elevation” (Fall 2016)
Location: 10510 Superfortress Ave, Mather, CA
Commissioners: Sacramento Jet Center
Project: According to lore, a huge school of golden koi swam upstream the Yangtze River gaining strength as they fought against the current. The school glimmered brilliantly as they moved together through the water. Upon reaching a waterfall at the river’s end, many of the koi turned back, but a small, bold group persevered onward undaunted.
Leaping from the depths of the river, they attempted to reach the top of the waterfall to no avail. Their efforts caught the attention of local demons, who mocked their efforts and heightened the waterfall out of malice. After a hundred years of jumping, one koi finally reached the top of the waterfall. The gods recognized the koi for its perseverance and determination and turned it into a golden dragon, the image of power and strength.
This legend mirrors the history of aviation. Through the strength, determination, and bravery over two thousand years, man was finally able to soar. The first flight by man was recorded in China using a kite in 600BC. Hundreds of years later, Leonardo da Vinci designed flying machines, but never built them. Finally, Sir George Cayley invented the first modern aircraft. Due to the tenacity of the Wright Brothers, and the many pilots who sacrificed their lives to pave the way, our world has changed and our ability to reach other cultures is at our fingertips. Using aircraft-inspired materials along with imagery from one of Asia’s most famous legends, this seven pillar painting pays homage to the power and strength within us all.