Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court
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Art in the Courthouse
University of New Mexico Art
The state’s busiest courthouse and the state’s largest university have partnered for more than a decade to exhibit some of the University of New Mexico’s best student and faculty artwork. Since 2007, dozens of works of art produced by students, alumni, faculty and staff in the Department of Art have been displayed on the courthouse walls for the enjoyment of public and employees.
A variety of media are on display; from oils to pastels, and photography. Some pieces are large and can be easily accommodated on courthouse walls. They are exhibited in well-used public areas, from the rotunda to the Jury Lounge. Every two years, a new group of works will be selected and displayed.
Courthouse Art: Permanent Collection
The Scale of Justice
Under the provisions of the state’s One Percent for Art Program, a portion of the building cost was set aside for public art at the courthouse. The Court has a major kinetic sculpture by artist Evelyn Rosenberg entitled “The Scale of Justice”. This computer-controlled sculpture transfers water from side to side every six minutes. At the base are inscriptions depicting human thought about truth and justice that date back to the writing of the Hammurabic Code in 1800 BC. The inscriptions are in their native languages and translations can be found on red granite tiles installed on the courthouse plaza.
The Desert of Life
There is also a nine piece grouping of stained glass art, “The Desert of Life,” by Janet Linden and Denise Taylor that graces the third floor windows of the rotunda.
“Germination,” a stone sculpture by Michael Orgel, stands in the center of the rotunda. The Court has two additional pieces on loan from Art in Public Places: “History of Fabrics: Golden Border” by Bhakti Zick, which hangs in Customer Service. In the entrance to the Jury Lounge on the second floor is “Blue Bird” by Kate Breakey.