12:52 PM

Return Of The Wings: DFW International Airport Unveils Nearly 300 Art Planes From Around The Globe

Artists, Students And Cultural Groups Respond To World Of Wings Community Art Program Celebrating International Terminal D

(DFW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, August 26, 2004) – DFW International Airport unveiled Texas's newest and most diverse public art program, called World of Wings, featuring hundreds of giant decorated airplanes by artists from around the globe. Chicago has its Cows. New Orleans has its Fish statues. Texas and DFW now have Art Planes. 

Nearly 300 of the intricately decorated and painted cardboard planes were on display today at a vast American Airlines maintenance hangar, awaiting their display in DFW's four existing terminals in anticipation of number five: International Terminal D. World of Wings is designed to raise awareness of the world's newest airline terminal and world's largest airport train - named Skylink - opening at DFW in 2005.  

"These cardboard airplanes have traveled millions of miles and been decorated in art museums, garages, classrooms and hospitals," says Jeff Fegan, CEO of DFW. "They have been decorated in backyards and on battlefields. And they symbolize and reflect the world crossroads that International Terminal D will bring to Texas and the entire United States." 

Art planes were flown in from exotic locations such as Buenos Aires, Argentina; Lima, Peru; Brussels, Belgium; Paris, France; Sao Paolo, Brazil and Zurich, Switzerland. Two decorated planes are on the way back from the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, of the U.S. Army and DFW's military assistance and Rest and Recuperation Program. 

American Airlines tucked cardboard planes in 777 aircraft and flew them around the world to DFW destinations for decorating. 

"We had an incredible response," said Tim Ahern, Vice President of the DFW Hub for American. “American Airlines shipped airplanes to 24 of our destinations around the world to be decorated by artists or employees in those cities. We're proud to be based here and are glad to help get the world involved in this project. These truly are works of art." 

The planes will be on display in DFW's four existing terminals with installation beginning in September. The Airport's 57 million passengers will see them in ticketing halls, concourses and in baggage claims. DFW will place locally painted planes in public areas so school children and community groups will have easy access to see their work on display. 

Additionally the art planes are showcased online at www.dfwairport.com/wow. They are divided by category – schools, airlines, destinations, cultural groups, government – and include pictures of the artists with their work. The site will be updated with location information and more photographs once the art planes have been placed on display. 

Highlights of DFW's World of Wings 

Name /Theme of Plane: Tango & Argentine Pampas Artist/Group: Jorge Molina, American Airlines Description: American Airlines employee Jorge Molina focused on two icons for his work: the famous Tango dance and the rolling plains of the Argentine Pampas where gauchos ride with their cattle. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “untitled” Artist/Group: Desmond Blair, artist and patient, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children Description: Blair created a stylized airplane highlighting features on the wings for his art plane. Blair has been a patient at Scottish Rite since he was two weeks old. Absent both of his hands, Blair excels at many forms of art, including acrylic painting, pencil and pen sketching, scratch board and airbrush.

Name/Theme of Plane: “Sankofa” Artist/Group: African American Museum, Dallas Description: Summer campers at the museum titled their plane Sankofa, a symbol from the Akan Language. The symbol translates to mean "We must retrieve our past in order to move forward.” The aircraft features children equipped with the knowledge of the past and on a journey to greatness. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “Dream Flyer” Artist/Group: Withers Elementary School, Dallas ISD Description: The student artists drew travel stickers or “dream flyers” collected as the students took imaginary flights around the world meeting other children.

Name/Theme of Plane: “Seeing the World Through Reading” Artist/Group: Alice Carlson Applied Learning Center, Fort Worth ISD Description: The Carlson plane features students favorite books and authors as well as places they have "visited" through literature. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “Our Country” Artist/Group: Holland America Club of Dallas Description: The club decorated its plane with a Dutch landscape featuring children in traditional clothing and an orange lion, the symbol for Holland. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “España” Artist/Group: Honorary Consulate of Spain Description: The Consulate created a touching tribute to the victims of the Madrid train bombing on March 11, 2004. The artists used yellow, black and red streaks and splatters of paint to create a dramatic effect. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “Peru from the Sky” Artist/Group: American Airlines employees Description: The AA team from Lima, Peru, decorated its plane featuring the Peruvian landscape, history, cultures, coastline, mountains and jungle. The airplane also depicts Nazca Lines - ancient symbols carved into the Peruvian Coast desert that are only appreciated from the sky.

Name/Theme of Plane: “Keep it Symbol” Artist/Group: DFW Airport Planning Department Description: Using international pictograms for food, restrooms, baggage claim and telephone, the Planning Department designed an art plane that reflects their work at the Airport and a universal form of silent communication. 

Name/Theme of Plane: “The Flight Home” Artist/Group: St. Petersburg Angels Description: This Russian adoption support group used pictures of Russian architecture and children before and after their adoptions into American families.

Name/Theme of Plane: “AirCliburn” Artist/Group: Sevan Melikyan, Van Cliburn International Piano Competition Description: Artist Sevan Melikyan depicts his notion of color in music by utilizing the shape and symbol of the airplane. The wings, or keys, are dotted with small squares of pigment that create a rhythm within the otherwise staid black and white pattern. 

Other participants include branches of the military, Federal Aviation Administration, Transportation Safety Administration, cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, Dallas Museum of Art, Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, National Cowgirl Hall of Fame, Ballet Folklorico Azteca de Fort Worth, Japan America Society of Dallas/Fort Worth, Canadian Club of North Texas and the U.S. Mexico Chamber of Commerce-Southwest Chapter. Also participating in the program will be Fort Worth International Sister Cities (Reggio Emilia, Italy; Nagaoka, Japan; Trier, Germany; Bandung, Indonesia; Budapest, Hungary; Toluca, Mexico; Mbabane, Swaziland, South Africa) and the Dallas-based general consulates for Britain, Mexico, Canada, El Salvador and Spain and Dallas International Sister Cities Monterrey, Mexico; Riga, Latvia and Taipei, Taiwan. 

To arrange interviews contact Ken Capps, Vice President, Public Affairs- DFW at 972 574 8080 or kcapps@dfwairport.com