Boston Valley Terra Cotta is proud to be a sponsor the Western New York region’s most notable fine arts event; the 2016 echo Art Fair. This event showcases a broad range of fine arts disciplines including painting, photography, sculpture, print, works on paper, video, mixed media, and performance art. New for this year, the event will expand it’s breadth to include Light Industry–an art section featuring architecture.
This year’s fair will be held at the former American Axle plant located at 1001 East Delavan. This 800,000 square foot complex had previously been a General Motors Chevrolet assembly plant. Designed by Albert Kahn, one of the most influential industrial architects of the 20th Century, the building features structural grids, large windows, open floor plans, and minimal ornamentation, inline with the “form follows function” aesthetic. Kahn was one of the first architects to use reinforced concrete for factory walls, floors, and supports instead of wood, creating stronger and more fire resistant structures with more open space. Often referred to as the Architect of Detroit, in 1937, Albert Kahn Associates was responsible for 19 percent of all architect-designed factories in the U.S.
Boston Valley will be contributing to the new architectural aspect of the echo Art Fair, working with the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning and Ang Li, an architect and Peter Reyner Banham Fellow, to create a site specific 13-foot terra cotta column. The column references the structure of Kahn’s innovative supports, but will be placed in a manor that will disrupt the established grid. The installation explores the relationship between vernacular craft and mass-production, as well as the cultural and historical connotations associated with terra cotta as a building material.