23rd Psalm in the Airport / by Louis Holstein

Art always finds me in the most unexpected places. One of the more recent experiences I had was at the Tampa International Airport. This past week I had to drop Ashley and Alana there for their mini-vacation to Puerto Rico. I figured I would walk them in and I was shocked when we arrived at check-in. I knew TPA was undergoing a massive renovation but I was not prepared for how clean and beautiful the newly redone section would be! 

After Ashley checked in and got her ticket, we proceeded to find something to eat. In our wanderings, we noticed a sign that read "Airpot Gallery." What? An airport gallery? All hunger subsided as our need to explore took over. There was wonderful paneling telling the history of the airport and models of what it is going to become over the next 10, 20 and 40 years. It was fascinating. We kept walking through and found a curated gallery with fine art! 

There was a huge highlight of Jane Davis Doggett's work. She is the designer of the Tampa Airport's logo, as well as the wayfinding signage throughout the terminals. We quickly learned she not only designed for Tampa, she also has designed logos and signage for the Memphis Airport, Newark International, Miami International, Clevland-Hopkins Airport and 35 others. This woman is considered a pioneer for the designing of wayfinding and graphics systems for airports. The gallery featured several pieces of her work, but the shining attraction for me was her "23 Psalm." You can see the full piece below. 


If it's minimalist, I'm in. So it is no surprise I fell in love with this installation almost immediately. Great art? Yes. A fascinating artist? Absolutely. Biblical inspired? Horray! Where am I, Heaven? 

What's crazy, and you can feel free to believe me or not, is that I was recently (about 2 weeks ago) thinking about doing a project with Christian iconography! So much so, that I bought two square canvases two days before I saw this work! This inspired me to get to work!

Below are my favorite squares from the piece. On the left, "He restoreth my soul;" and on the right "For thou art with me' thy rod and they staff, they comfort me." Both of these verses are a testament to God's working in my life in recent days. They are true statements that I can join in and profess. The minimalist design encourages me to keep life simple. Don't think so much. See life as a metaphor. What a God-send this gallery was, and yet another argument for the power of art in public spaces that I can add to the list.