Ribbons is a landscape sculpture that transforms the open-air courtyard of 50 United Nations Plaza, part of a National Historic Landmark of the San Francisco Civic Center. It is the centerpiece of the U.S. General Service Administrations’ historic Deep Green renovation of their Pacific Rim Headquarters. Ribbons integrates contemporary sculpture and sustainable strategies with the building’s historic Beaux-Arts architecture through a horizontal arrangement of sculptures made from cast, recycled concrete benches and carved granite fountains. Rising from paving ribbons, the landscape sculpture forms a rhythmic circulation system of permeable decomposed granite paving within a grove of Himalayan White Birch, with and understory of Heuchera, Deer Fern and an edge of Cape Rush. The project creates an exciting contemporary visual language that belongs to the historic fabric of the existing building as well as meets the GSA’s aggressive sustainability requirements for this LEED Platinum project.
Cliff Garten Studio is a hybridized sculpture and landscape firm based in Venice, California. Founded by internationally recognized sculptor Cliff Garten, we believe there is tremendous potential for our infrastructures to express more than the functions they perform. Like the beautiful bowl that holds our fruit, infrastructure should both serve our needs and be visually engaging and memorable in a single breath. By providing an intimate connective fabric among material, form, function and public perception Garten has always had as one of its central concerns the accommodation of public life. Through the integration of what he calls â€œlandscape sculptureâ€ our practice engages in a dialogue with clients to add value and expand the possibilities of infrastructure and the built environment.