The Aquarius Art Tunnel at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas, by artist Janavi Mahimtura Folmsbee has been awarded the “People’s Choice” prize by the 11th annual international design competition.
The competition received over 411 entries this year, which is a record. These represented over US$54 million (~€51.1 million) in commissioned work by artists across the globe. This year’s prizes featured winners from Taiwan, Germany, Italy, the UK and Canada. The winners were presented with their awards at the CODA summit in San José, California, on October 6, 2023.
The Aquarius tunnel is 240ft/73m long, 22ft/6.7m wide, and almost 9ft/2.7m high, and it takes travelers on a magical aquatic journey as they move between airport buildings. The mural also won the 2023 National Mural Award for Region 4, covering Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, Arizona and New Mexico.
Commenting on the prizes, Alton DuLaney, who submitted the work and is the curator of public art and director of cultural arts programs at Houston Airports stated:
“Now the world’s best airport art program officially has the world’s best public arts project The immersive art experience by Indian-born, Houston-based artist Janavi Mahimtura Folmsbee received more than 20 percent of the total votes cast. That’s the most votes of any artwork in the history of the award.”
You can find out more about the artist here.