• Tom Genes

Paper Airplane Lands in Aspen

This week, large-scale sculpture artist Griffin Loop will install a 25 foot stainless steel sculpture of a paper airplane model front and center on the lawn at Aspen’s Red Brick Center for the Arts as outdoor public art, as well opening an exhibition at the Skye Gallery, both are through his project entitled ‘LAUNCH INTENTION’. The project is based around models of paper airplanes which serve as an invitation for viewers to set intentions by verbalizing what they need and/or want and launching these ideas into action. Loop has engaged communities, youth and schools all over the country. His mission is to create and display accessible artwork out-of-doors in public places so that everyone can have their own experience. 

Loop explains the idea behind his art: “A paper airplane represents youthful innocence and fun. It is one of the first things we create as children and launch into the world. The ‘LAUNCH INTENTION’ project is based around this childhood symbol. It is a platform to solidify dreams and share them with each other and around the world. It is a reminder for all to free yourself, set intention and launch into action.”

The art serves as an icebreaker to pull intentions out of the viewers. In some of the past installations, the audience has been encouraged to write their intentions in chalk directly on the metal folds of the plane. For the Red Brick installation, viewers can digitally submit their intentions through the website: www.LAUNCHINTENTION.com and a QR code found onsite. Loop will respond to the submissions to keep people accountable and to support their intentions, in addition to using the messages to inspire new artwork. 

In August 2019, coinciding with Aspen’s Art Fair, Loop brought a 25 foot metal sculpture of a paper airplane model to Aspen. The sculpture was displayed outside in the centrally-located Paepke Park through a park permit application. The piece was sold and is now publicly displayed in Bentonville, AK.

In September 2019, Griffin Loop was invited to be part of a group show called ‘Resilience’ at the Red Brick Center for the Arts alongside eight other artists. Sarah Roy, Red Brick Executive Director, remarks: 



“The show took on a lot more relevance once the Pandemic hit. The topic of resilience is meaningful now more than ever, since we have all been challenged and are trying to find meaning in how we face those challenges. With Loop’s ‘LAUNCH INTENTION’, there is an interactive component asking people to engage with the process.” 

The ‘Resilience’ group show concluded in October 2020, but the Red Brick asked Loop to keep his sculpture on display through winter 2021. On Wednesday, November 4, Loop will move the LAUNCH INTENTION’ sculpture from the side of the Red Brick to the front lawn of the campus for optimal viewing and interaction. There is a video and information about the sculpture inside the Red Brick. The sculpture is for sale. Roy declares: 

“The Red Brick front lawn is such a great space to show art. It is timely to have outdoor sculptures that are accessible in pandemic times. Showing this work is an exciting new path for the Red Brick.”

In addition to the sculpture installation at the Red Brick Center for the Arts, Loop will exhibit  a series of small scale paper airplanes, between two and four feet from November 3-December 15, 2020 at Aspen’s Skye Gallery, 535 E Cooper Ave, Aspen, Hours Monday-Sunday, 11AM-5PM.

Loop explains the philosophy behind his artwork: I create to explore and communicate with myself and the world. To push. To grow. To question. To embrace. To respect what we as humans can do and pay homage to the infinite powers and beauties beyond. When I remove identity from the equation anything is possible. I will always explore further.”

A Los Angeles based artist, Loop has enjoyed traveling to Aspen and being a part of the art community here over the last few years. Other sculptures by Loop can be found in California, Oregon, Utah, Florida, Arkansas, Montana, in both public and private spaces. https://www.griffinloop.com/lookbook

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