I was honored to have been awarded this projectby Mid-Pen Housing to create two informative public art installations, on the site of the Castro house in Aptos, CA in 2013. All artworks were completed and installed in early 2014. The project team included: Anderson McKelvey Architects, Kent Construction , FME Architecture + Design and Mid-Pen Housing.
Aptos Blue is a 40 unit apartment complex which serves low and very low income individuals. It is located on part of the original and historic Aptos Rancho, once a 6,686-acre Mexican land grant given to Rafael Castro in 1833. The Castro House, built by Rafael Castro’s son Vicente Castro, was fully renovated and serves as Aptos Blue’s Community Center. The developer of Aptos Blue, MidPen Housing Corporation, asked me to create two, interpretive displays that encourage the public and the residents of Aptos Blue to engage with stories of the property’s past, particularly The Castro House.
This was a special project with very unique parameters, Mid-Pen specifically requested that I utilize materials directly reclaimed from the site during the demolition and restoration. My process included screen printing a series of portraits of the former owners such as: San Francisco laywer Bartley Crum directly on 100 year old wallboard. With the help of woodworker Michael Eli beautiful, plain sawn redwood wall planks were handmade into frames for these prints. I had the good fortune to discovered baseball player Fred Toney's signature on a kitchen wall, which was later included in the interior installation.
Historic photographs courtesy of the Aptos History Museum