Lawrence Argent

Morgan Kairey


Visiting Artist

Lawrence Argent

            Lawrence Argent is usually known as the guy behind the big blue bear, I See What You Mean, in Denver.  He is famous for his public art in Denver and Sacramento.

In I See What You Mean, Argent’s idea came from thinking about how the environment was used.  I was a meeting place and the vast number of people that move through this environment was a huge factor.  He wanted to bring the mountains down to Denver to prompt visitor’s awareness of the uniqueness of their location.  Argent thought about animals being representative of the mountains and came up with the idea of a black bear.

Leap, at the Sacramento airport, Argent was thinking about the different emotions that come to us as we are about to travel on a plane.  He also had in mind what the meaning of baggage really meant, both metaphorically and literally.  The sense of being reunited with your property as it comes around the baggage claim.  The thought of loosing our things or misplacing our possessions can be a disaster.   Argent chose to create a rabbit and a suitcase.  Because most of the land around the airport is seemingly untouched, Argent thought he would bring the outside in.  It seems as if the rabbit has leapt through the glass and is diving into the suitcase.  The rabbit is thought to also bring good luck.

I like a lot of Argent’s work but I really disliked Cojones.  It is made out of street sweeper brushes and steel.  He said he created this piece because people asked if he was going to start a car wash and because of his masculine pride.  I understand his reasoning behind this piece but I really disliked it.

Argent talked about Waiting.  He tells us how objects tell us stories.  In Waiting, there are three objects, a bucket, a ladder, and a chair.  On the chair is people’s butts are projected onto the chair, some nude, some clothed, and all different genders and ages.  It causes the viewer to ask why.  Why are these projections sitting, waiting?  Argent tells us that it all depends on the viewer.

I really enjoyed Argent’s work and will continue to follow him in his career.  I am a huge fan of his public work and some of his paintings using charcoal and chalk.  Although his work doesn’t always have a personal meaning or reasoning behind it, I still find it fascinating and think his work is very successful.

One Response

  1. I really appreciated how you were honest about the work, it makes essays more interesting I think, to read about why someone didn’t enjoy a specific piece. I would agree with you that I don’t believe that work is his best. For your essay, I thought it sounded a little choppy in parts. However, the ideas were there and the theme of putting something where it doesn’t belong was prevalent in the essay.

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