The criteria request for this project is for a photogenic image, one that engenders civic pride that will be the first monument for Rancho Cucamonga, CA. In our contemporary world of selfies and instant feedback, an iconic image is not only a place-maker, but takes on a new role: social connection. There is a desire for the artwork to be captivating and a catalyst for conversation. Because Rancho Cucamonga recognizes its special Route 66 heritage, and supports the preservation of its remaining vintage road structures, this proposal looks at the roadside attraction as a reference.
Roadside attractions are eye-catching, bigger-than-life, and absurdly fun. Victoria Gardens is a successful example of new urbanism that has grown from suburban sprawl. It has promoted the creation of a walkable, compact, vibrant, mixed-use community. This proposal uses the image of a midcentury California tract home to create a sculpture that embodies the optimism of California living. Like traditional city monuments such as domes and memorials, the surface of the sculpture will be gold leaf, signifying the preciousness of the American Dream ideal of homeownership. This large (close to full-scale) house rotated vertically, will be a heroic monument to the city’s residents and a visible landmark of the downtown core from distant views. In the spirit of the roadside attraction, it will be whimsical and colossal which will encourage photographs, conversation and social media awareness. At once majestic and humble, it is a familiar form that will speak to residents of all ages and connect them to a heritage of adventurous outdoor living in the Golden State.