Eco Art on 8th Street
In 2010, CCDC embarked on a concept planning process for 8th Street between Main Street and the Boise River. The purpose was to take a wholistic view of this important pedestrian-oriented street that runs from the State Capitol to the river and links together the downtown business core, 8th Street Café District, Grove Plaza, BoDo and the Cultural District. This process generated a variety of ideas about how to enhance this street to create a unique ambience, liveliness and synergy. One of the ideas that emerged was to invest in public art having an ecological focus.
“Virgo” celebrates the constellations of the autumnal equinox, and an awareness of the seasonal cycles governed by the movement of the sun, stars and moon. The work lies in the ground plane at the plazas at 8th and Front streets, and across Front at the entrance to the Grove. It consists of steel engraved discs inset into the brick pavers representing the brightest stars of the constellations that might be visible on the autumnal equinox if Boise was “dark-sky friendly,” with no light pollution. Lines connecting the constellations are sawn into the pavement. The focus constellation is Virgo, associated with fertilitily and the autumn harvest. The project increases awareness of the night sky, connecting modern humans to our ancestors, and reminds us of our responsibilities as stewards of the earth.