Jaume Plensa Selects Downtown San Diego’s Pacific Gate by Bosa High-Rise for His Next West Coast Public Installation

Bosa Development announced that Jaume Plensa, best known for monumental sculptures in public spaces across international destinations from Chicago to Venice, Italy, is creating a public installation entitled Pacific Soul that will be on display in the public plaza at its Pacific Gate by Bosa luxury residences.


Scheduled to be installed in late 2017, the sculpture will be hallmark Plensa, who has produced a multifaceted body of work creating sculptures that speak to the capacity and beauty of humanity, often bringing people together through the activation of public spaces. By combining conventional sculptural materials like glass, steel, bronze and aluminum with more unconventional media like water, light and sound, Plensa creates hybrid works of intricate energy, psychological weight, and symbolic richness. By posing numerous dualities, such as inside and outside, light and dark, and earth and sky, the artist seeks to connect his work with viewers on an intuitive level.

Pacific Soul and Pacific Gate will be located at the emerging gateway to Downtown at the corner of Pacific and Broadway. The skyline-changing architecture of Pacific Gate coupled with the size and relevance of Plensa’s installation mark a dramatic and memorable welcome to the world.

Nat Bosa, president of Bosa Development, says, “We are passionate about elevating Downtown San Diego onto the international stage. Plensa’s Pacific Soul will be the third public installation we have commissioned Downtown. We are confident that Plensa’s international presence in the fine arts, and the millions of people his sculptures have touched, will bring attention and visitors from around the world.”

Plensa fuses his concepts with equal part imagination and use of technology to fabricate gigantic installations. Plensa’s technique is an ideal metaphor for Downtown San Diego’s growth, which is supported by the imaginative tech scene and startup community. Says Plensa, “Technique can be a problem if you think about it beforehand. You just dream. Then you find a solution.”

The analogy continues with Pacific Gate. In one of the boldest architectural statements Downtown San Diego has ever seen, the building mirrors Plensa and the city’s marriage of creativity and technology. The 41-story oval glass tower includes two-nested curved glass towers that require as much artistry as physics. The result offers residents a different viewing experience from the ocean to the city, whereas spectators and passersby at street level will experience various perspectives depending on which angle they are viewing the building.

Plensa, who worked with Bosa Development’s fine art consultant Jody Rassell of Fine Art Services, LLC, came to San Diego and during his tour, he engaged all of his senses and imagination to experience the ocean, the Port and waterfront, the city’s proximity to Mexico and the scale of Pacific Gate. Soon after, he decided Downtown San Diego and Pacific Gate would be his next Southern California installation.

Plensa’s West Coast public installations include Endless V (2012) in the Beverly Gardens Park in Beverly Hills; Laura and Awilda (2014) in the collection of the Palm Springs Art Museum; and Echo, a monumental portrait, in the collection of the Seattle Art Museum and installed at the Olympic Sculpture Park.

Says Plensa, “Pacific Soul is inspired by the ocean, our greatest public space and a bridge which connects the world. The ocean is always in movement, always changing; we never know precisely where a drop of water will go, or where it has been before. It is filled with potential. That idea also holds true for the community of San Diego. I hope my sculpture will be an icon for the city, embracing the diverse community which is always changing yet always intrinsically connected to the ocean.”

Plensa’s work will join two other Bosa-commissioned public art installations, one at The Grand Building by New York-based Spencer Finch and the other at Bayside by London-based Shirazch Houshiary.

Says Bosa, “Plensa attracts a worldwide audience whose attention will heighten Downtown San Diego and Pacific Gate to the global stage.”

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