Inspired by our artwork curation for the newly redesigned The Plaza Hotel Pioneer Park, we invite you to explore El Paso’s history and culture through the eyes of KBAA’s art advisors.
Built in 1930, The Plaza Hotel Pioneer Park has gone by many names and had even more notable guests. To mark the start of the next chapter for this historic hotel, our advisors were inspired to specify art that reflected the history and legacy of the hotel and area. Located right along the U.S.- Mexico border, El Paso is a border town with a culture that reflects both countries. Our curation was inspired by icons of classic Mexican cinema and culture, traditional art of the region, and the beautiful Art Deco architecture of the building.
Focusing on the three themes of historic architecture, local landscape, and traditional art forms, The Plaza El Paso’s art collection is authentic, multicultural, and unique.
Inspiration — Historic Architecture
By referencing the original architecture of the building’s facade, our art curation celebrates the history of the hotel while reinterpreting it for a new generation. A focus on pattern is a classic element of Art Deco architecture, as evidenced by the ornamentation prominent on its hotel’s exterior. KBAA commissioned a series of large-scale laser cut wood art inspired by the shape and style of these flourishes. The particular patterns of the wood pieces pay homage to an influence shared by the city of El Paso and Art Deco architecture: indigenous Mexican art.
Inspiration — Local Landscape
The climate and landscape of El Paso is arid, but like all high deserts there are areas where plant life can be surprisingly vibrant. Framed photographs feature some of the most beautiful and iconic plants of El Paso. Bright orange poppies, yucca, and prickly pear cacti are shown in brilliant contrast to a bright blue sky streaked with soft clouds. Desert flora not only represents beauty in harsh landscapes, but they are also of cultural significance to the region’s indigenous peoples. To add another layer of intrigue and to further reflect the cultural contributions of local artisans, KBAA laser cut a traditional papel picado style into the borders of the photographs.
Inspiration — Traditional Mexican Artforms
The art curated for The Plaza El Paso references traditional Mexican art technique and materiality. The look of the laser cut artwork references the beautiful precision of cut paper art. Our color palette reflects the warm earth tones made from natural dyes and fibers native to the area. An emphasis on textile art reflects the American Southwest and Mexico’s rich history of weaving and embroidery tradition. In the hotel’s lobby, native Texan Lauren Williams’ large-scale textile wall hanging is prominently displayed. This piece of art is made up of smaller panels that fit together to create a magical interpretation of a dusty rose mountain range. Mexican artist Victoria Villasana’s embroidered photographs of Mexican notables reinvent these cultural icons with a guerrilla art technique.
The desert offers endless inspiration for art moments. Discover some of our favorite projects set in the breathtaking natural splendor of the American Southwest.