Aspen Institute Installs Monumental Herbert Bayer Sculpture on Campus
The 1978 artwork, Anaconda, will be on display for the first time since 1995
Aspen, CO, June 4, 2018 –– The Aspen Institute is excited to announce the addition of a new sculpture to the Aspen Meadows Campus. Through the generous support of Melony and Adam Lewis, the Institute has acquired and installed Anaconda, a 1978 sculpture by Herbert Bayer.
Bayer hand-selected the Carrara marble from Central Italy for this 7-piece geometric sculpture that measures 32 x 8 x 8 feet. Anaconda was first installed in the foyer of Atlantic Richfield’s Anaconda building in Denver, Colorado in 1978. The Atlantic Richfield Company was founded by Robert O. Anderson, who served as the second President of the Aspen Institute from 1957–1963, following Walter Paepcke.
The Aspen Institute acquired the sculpture from the Denver Art Museum in 2017, where it had remained in crates since its removal from the lobby in 1995. In its new incarnation at the Aspen Meadows Campus, Anaconda is outside, with the Highlands Bowl as its backdrop and in alignment with the Paepcke Building and the Benedict Music Tent. The site was selected under the advisement of Bernard Jazzar, Curator of the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Collection, Jeff Berkus of Jeffrey Berkus Architects, and Richard Shaw of Design Workshop. Mexican River rocks form the base of Anaconda, referencing the original black, granite pool setting in the Anaconda Building and also paying homage to Bayer’s selection of this rock throughout the campus.
Melony & Adam Lewis, Aspen-based philanthropists and members of the Aspen Institute’s Society of Fellows, provided the underwriting. The sculpture is dedicated in honor of Adam’s mother Toby Devan Lewis, an art curator, collector, author and philanthropist who has been involved with the Aspen Institute for decades. Toby served as curator of the Progressive Corporation collection, amassing over 6000 works by young and contemporary artists. Her legacy of building corporate engagement and support of the arts reflects the career of Herbert Bayer, who served as a design consultant at Container Corporation of America, a Walter Paepcke founded business. In this role, he was involved with the groundbreaking campaign “Great Ideas of Western Man,” which commissioned contemporary artists to create works inspired by quotes from famed historical thinkers.
The Aspen Institute’s President and CEO, Dan Porterfield, commented, “The Institute is greatly indebted to the Lewis Family for all they have done to support the Institute and nurture the arts. The Anaconda sculpture is a wonderful addition to the Aspen Meadows Campus for the enjoyment of the whole community, who share in celebrating Herbert Bayer’s legacy. We are thrilled to install this sculpture as we gear up for next year’s celebration of the hundredth-year anniversary of the founding of the Bauhaus School.”