Accessibility mode is enabled

Skip to Top / Tab to View Menu Options
Skip to Left Navigation / Tab to View Content


The Sacramento City Council has approved the acquisition of three public art pieces by regional artists for the Golden 1 Center. The Metropolitan Arts Commission previously had unanimously approved artworks by Gale Hart and Bill Fontana and Bryan Valenzuela for public art projects at the Golden 1 Center.   A nine-member panel comprised of arts professionals and representatives from the community reviewed 135 applicants, all of whom reside in the Northern California region. The panel selected Hart, Fontana and Valenzuela for this highly competitive project.

The artists were chosen following a $1.5 million investment to commission regional art for the arena. Sacramento philanthropist and artist Marcy Friedman gifted $1 million and $500,000 is coming from the ESC construction budget as part of the Art in Public Places program. The two pieces are part of the historic $1.5 million investment to be made in regional art.

Bryan Valenzuela's project will be a suspended sculpture comprised of two separate channels that wind, twist and cascade through the arena’s southwest escalator atrium. These two river channels will intersect at the halfway point around a structural beam in the center of the room, merging into one channel, flowing to the spatial edge beyond the escalator. The
material of the piece will consist of approximately 400 individual hollow blown-glass spheres in three sizes: 12 inches, 16 inches and 20 inches in diameter. Each sphere will be translucent, adorned with abstracted aquarelle designs of varying intensity in primarily blue and turquoise shades. A reflective gold color will be added to the design, evoking glints of gold in the river, hinting at the 19th-century history of the area. The spheres will be suspended from the ceiling, supported by approximately 115 separate stainless steel spines that curve around, run parallel to, and surge over one another. As
a whole, the piece references the new building as a place where ideas and individuals can converge, with the hope of generating a ripple effect of prosperity for this region.  

Bryan Valenzuela arena proposal Bryan Valenzuela arena proposal

Bryan Valenzuela arena proposal

Gale Hart’s project features a series of sculptures to be installed along L Street in front of arena and at one of three entrances into the arena plaza. The untitled artwork features the components of a dart game -- darts, numbers, and a blank dart board.  The game looks as if it has been dismantled and scattered along the street.  Six multi-colored approximately 10-foot fiberglass and stainless steel darts will be installed in the sidewalk.   A massive and empty dart board fabricated with terrazzo will be placed on the sidewalk and giant concrete numbers installed on the building and etched into the sidewalk.  Two giant bronze hands holding pieces of a dart game frame the entrance to the arena at the corner of 5th and L streets.  The images below show Hart's concept for the artworks.

Design for Gale Hart artwork at Golden 1 Center. Design for Gale Hart artwork at Golden 1 Center. Design for Gale Hart artwork at Golden 1 Center.
Design for Gale Hart artwork at Golden 1 Center.

William Fontana proposes that a sound sculpture be installed on the linear plaza on the north side of the arena. The sound mix will reflect Sacramento and the building itself. A matrix of 34 small loudspeakers will be distributed among the planters on the plaza, and on the two Green Wall sections facing the planters, producing an immersive sound experience.

The selection process for the purchase of artwork by regional artists began at the end of May 2015. The Arts Commission received 135 eligible applications by the deadline. The panel met on July 31 to select finalists for the project based on the quality of artwork presented and the applicants’ experience. In accordance with standard policies and procedures, SMAC, at their regularly scheduled meeting on August 10, 2015, unanimously approved the finalists.  On December 14, 2015, the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission approved the design concepts of both artists.


BILL FONTANA (San Francisco, Calif.)

Bill Fontana is an American composer and artist who developed an international reputation for his pioneering experiments in sound. Since the early 1970’s Fontana has used sound as a sculptural medium to interact with and transform our perceptions of visual and architectural spaces. His work has been exhibited at the Whitney Museum of American Art; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the Museum Ludwig, Cologne; the Post Museum in Frankfurt; the Art History and Natural History Museums in Vienna; both Tate Modern and Tate Britain in London; and the 48th Venice Biennale.  He has produced major radio sound art projects for the BBC, the European Broadcast Union, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, National Public Radio, West German Radio (WDR), Swedish Radio, Radio France, and the Austrian State Radio.

GALE HART (Sacramento, Calif.)

Gale Hart is a self-taught artist who has shown her work throughout Sacramento since the early 1990’s. Her work has been exhibited in galleries across the United States including the Elliott Fouts Gallery, Sacramento; Bash Contemporary, San Francisco; Atelier 31 Gallery, Seattle, WA; Gallery ten472; New York; and the New Leaf Gallery in Sonoma, CA. She conceived, curated and directed the “2nd Annual Circus Show and Other Atrocities” in Sacramento and founded, directed and participated in “A Bitchin’ Space” in Sacramento. Her work has been written about in American Art Collector, the Sacramento Bee, Sacramento News and Review, and Sacramento Magazine.

BRYAN VALENZUELA (Sacramento, Calif.)

Bryan Valenzuela resides in Sacramento and holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from California State University, Sacramento. For more than a decade, he has worked to perfect a unique drawing technique involving the atomization of the figure by carving out shape and light with handwritten text. Though virtually unnoticeable from afar, once the viewer steps closer to each work they are engulfed in a barrage of words intermingled with other mixed media elements such as needle and thread, acrylic paint, and collage.  He was awarded “Best in Show” at the 2015 California State Fair Fine Arts Competition.  He has also participated in the “Big Names, Small Art Auction” at the Crocker Art Museum. When not working in the studio, he's composing and recording music, and performing and touring with the band Exquisite Corps.

Golden 1 Center Artist Selection Panelists

  • René de Guzman, Senior Curator of Art, Oakland Museum of California
  • Marcy Friedman, Philanthropist; Arts Advocate
  • Cheryl Holben, Chair, Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission
  • Dr. Paul Jacobs, Executive Chairman, QualComm
  • Lial Jones, Mort and Marcy Friedman Director, Crocker Art Museum
  • Lizzetta LeFalle-Collins, Freelance Curator/Guest Curator, Museum of the African Diaspora
  • Annabeth Rosen, Artist; Professor of Art, UC Davis
  • Rob Rothblatt, Design Principal, AECOM
  • Rachel Teagle, Director, Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Shrem Museum of Art

The Art in Public Places Program of the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission was established by the City and County of Sacramento to provide visual art experiences in public locations. The Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission is devoted to supporting, promoting and advocating for the arts in the region. For further information on programs and opportunities through the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission go to SMAC is funded by the City and County of Sacramento.