Mural: Northwest Passages - Designed by Nelson Sandgren

dc.contributor.authorKosanovic, Jerry
dc.descriptionVideography and editing credit to Jerry Kosanovic: filmed July and August of 1989. It contains much live footage of the enlargement and execution, in several stages, of Nelson Sandgren's mural cartoons for the main concoursewalls of the Eugene/Springfield Mahlon Sweet Airport. It documents the architectural spaces, palettes, artist's acrylic pigments, scaffolding, painting movements and gestures and some of the many discussions between Nelson Sandgren, Erik Sandgren, Mark Clarke and Carol Yates as they translate Nelson's color sketches to the wall in situ. This video adds significantly to the documentation of plans, elevations, public art proposal documents, revisions, budgets, architectural model, invoices, preliminary sketches, press, still photographs and Nelson's notes about the project already gifted to PNAA. The mural, on both sides of the main concourse was painted over six weeks on site weeknights between 11:00 PM and 5 AM to avoid conflicts between passenger traffic and our placement of scaffolding. The lower edge of the mural is 18' off the floor and extends as high as 40 feet under the uppermost sweep of the glue-lam beams. At 4300 square feet it remains the largest mural in the Pacific Northwest. Three inch grids on the cartoons were enlarged with snappiness to something like 2 foot grids on the walls. By using that scale change Nelson ensured that many painting decisions about shape and color and detail and direction of brushstroke remained to be decided by us in the making of the mural at scale. Rather than merely enlarging an existing design this came alive in the context in which it is viewed. The vitality and freshness of its lively color juxtapositions are still evident. Other public art pieces in the airport context are also documented. Nelson was seventy two years of age at the time so it fell to me to do much of the gridding and layout. This video may convey the scale of the image and effort better than any other singe document. It ends with an KMTR TV "Inside Oregon" segment with commentary and artist interview.
dc.language.isoENG english
dc.relation.ispartofWillamette University Archives
dc.relation.ispartofNelson and Olive Sandgren Collection
dc.rightsEducational use is permitted without permission. Permission is required for additional uses. See for more information.
dc.titleMural: Northwest Passages - Designed by Nelson Sandgren
local.personalnameSandgren, Nelson