GUST Exhibit, Discovery Green, Houston, Texas

Much like many elementary school music classes in the 90’s, we sang the hell out of some Bette Midler’s “Wind Beneath My Wings”. What that has to do with The Gorillaz’ “Feel Good Inc.” is still beyond me. But, the theme this week is wind.  Welcome to #haveboomboxwilltravel, feel free to sing along if you know the hits.

The sky over Houston today has been clouded by a deep black smoke from the burning and subsequent firefight of a group of chemical tanks in nearby Deer Park. The burn is estimated by officials to last a few more days. I had a lineup of what I wanted to write about, but coincidently, this recent event developed and moved me to try something a little different.

My father has worked in and around chemical plants my entire life. I once asked him what he did when I was about 12 and got a very technical answer that to this day, I still haven’t fully unraveled. But, what I do very much recognize is that every time there is news of some sort of explosion, fire or mishap in the area my heart skips a beat. No fatalities have been reported due to the current fire, but I am definitely hoping that stays the case.

There is something mysterious to me about the air, how it is something that we all share yet no one really controls. It is both an active commodity and yet untethered. I have seen the wind be harnessed for energy production with massive turbines. Coincidently, the rush of wind to my face has helped define moments of joy and whimsy; rushing through my hair in a convertible drive along the California Coast, a breeze at my back climbing Balanced Rock or riding my bike through the park trails.

Discovery Green’s latest art installment GUST brings hundreds of pinwheels to the Downtown location, to demonstrate some of that whimsy experienced from the power of the air we share. On display until May 28, 2019, I wanted to highlight the installment here as it focuses on making those shared and pleasant memories.

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