Illusions at BCT, Colorful Contrails at BOI 

The newest piece of public art at BOI, "Sky Bridge," by Vermont artist Seth Palmiter

photo by Jessica Murri

The newest piece of public art at BOI, "Sky Bridge," by Vermont artist Seth Palmiter

Jessica Murri

In Fata Morgana, the latest production by Boise Contemporary Theater, Tori (Kathy McCafferty) and Jack (Matthew Cameron Clark) are a married couple living on the shores of a contaminated lake. When they're visited by their pregnant, teenage niece, Morgan (Danielle Sacks), who's angling to deliver her baby far from her less-than-understanding immediate family, they grudgingly agree to help. Jack's job is to hunt the crows crowding the toxic lake and one of them—a puppet manned and voiced by BCT Associate Artist Dwayne Blackaller—has begun to haunt Tori. In a devastating finale, there's the revelation that Fata Morgana is a play about a pregnancy only under a microscope. Through a telescope, it's about a terrible curse.

Sacks' Morgan was the image of a bratty, self-absorbed teenager; and McCafferty and Cherene Snow (Morgan's nurse, Shelley), delivered stand-out performances. Fata Morgana packs a wallop. It's clever overall, funny in parts and inventive in ways that will draw audiences in. Be warned, though: It isn't for the faint of heart.

From BCT, we go to BOI and "Sky Bridge," created by Vermont artist Seth Palmiter. The new addition to Boise's public art collection is made up of 120 pieces of translucent blue acrylic cut in wavy shapes and is suspended by thin wires from the ceiling of the pedestrian walkway connecting the parking garage to the second floor of the terminal at the Boise Airport. Boise Mayor Dave Bieter stood beneath it in a dedication ceremony on Feb. 5.

"We work really hard on art at the city, and we're really proud of what's gone on," Bieter said. The installation is part of BOI's parking garage expansion, which cost around $13 million. The artwork itself cost $55,000. Palmiter was selected from 32 artists who submitted ideas for the national talent call. Airport officials said some of those who submitted were local, but it's not uncommon to select outside artists for public art at BOI. About half of the art at the airport is local, while the other half is outsourced.

"These days, we're texting and hardly paying attention," Palmiter said during the dedication, "but my intent was to be able to experience art as you're glancing at the floor, and glance back up, it gives another chance to see the art change shape from one end of the walk to the next."

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