The 1996 Centennial Olympic Games were accompanied by a large influx of public artworks acquired by the City of Atlanta, including Games, an abstract Corten steel sculpture by Spanish artist Elisa Arimany. Corten steel is intended to showcase the passing of time through its ever-developing ferric patina. Its appearance tends to be most even and aesthetically pleasing when uninterrupted by alternative influences, but the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs’ Public Art Conservation and Maintenance Manager, Shannon Douglas Kimbro, recently noticed the patina on Games had developed a streaky and uneven appearance with previous vandalism and damage becoming more apparent with the passage of time.
Local metalworker Jeffry Loy was brought in to perform a mechanical treatment on the artwork to improve the appearance of the patina. Jeffry’s work should promote a more even appearance to the patina as it continues to develop over time. He also spent time cleaning the sculpture’s concrete base to remove any elements distracting to the viewer’s eye, such as unsightly residues, litter, pollutants and biological debris. The Public Art Conservation and Maintenance team also performed a “bang trim” on some of the trees hanging overhead, clearing the space from any contact between branches and the surface of the artwork. If you are ever traveling up Capitol Avenue near the I-20 exit ramp, you will see this newly restored beauty stepping out from the shadows.