The Data Center Mural Project: A History of Connection

The Data Center Mural Project: A History of Connection


My name’s Gary Kelley. I’m an Iowa native
and I’ve been a visual artist, a painter,
a printmaker, illustrator for decades now. I’ve been commissioned to create
an image for the wall behind me. I’m responsible for that. So Gary is, um… I don’t know if I want to call
him a technophobe but, you know, technology is not something
he uses on a daily basis. I’m a pretty handmade
kind of artist so this is like total
science fiction for me. I love the narrative
of making pictures. I like to do people and
I like to tell stories. With this project,
I saw an opportunity to do both of those things. Council Bluffs became
a critical point of westward expansion
following Lewis & Clark. Within 70 years, America was
joined east to west, through Council Bluffs, by a rail system
and the telegraph and made Council Bluffs
an enduring anchor of the sharing
of information. This was the data
center of 120 years ago. It was a very intriguing
connection to the data that today passes
through Council Bluffs. I wanted there to be a
continuum, a narrative, that tracks the
history of people disseminating,
collecting, sharing data. Starting with Lewis & Clark
and their council with the native
people, the Otoe Tribe. They were sharing
information and then moving to
similar people working in the
data center today. And in between, we have
these elements that will remind the residents
of the region of their importance in
all of this, of them. It’s great to see
that happen here, and to see that
continued tradition of sharing information
across the world, and really enabling people
to do things that they didn’t think
were possible before. It’s about the people
and history and making it all reflect what
happens on that site.

23 thoughts on “The Data Center Mural Project: A History of Connection

  1. מרגש הפעילות המשולבת אמנות עם יוצר אמן, רעיון מייפה במראה אורבני, ויישום פורה מחבר עכשווי אנושי, ישר כוח.. גרי קלי.. תודה

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