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NY Times article: A Stadium as a Work of Art


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Q. & A. With Jeffrey Loria

A Stadium as a Work of Art



Published: September 20, 2009


When Jeffrey Loria says that the Florida Marlins’ new stadium will be a work of art, he means it literally. Loria, the owner of the Marlins, who made his money as an art dealer, is overseeing many of the details of the design of the park, which is expected to open in 2012 on the site of the old Orange Bowl in Miami’s Little Havana neighborhood.


In an office in his gallery on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, Loria talked about his vision for the stadium, which will have a retractable roof and 37,000 seats.


“The city of Miami is a new, electric city, so it called for something contemporary,� he said. “I wanted the stadium in a place where it would be a piece of sculpture. I wanted people to go to a ballgame to use their eyes and be in a facility that’s not just another retro stadium. Color is very important. The stadium will be bathed by light.�


Q. What were your inspirations?


A. I went to Barcelona to see the Miró Foundation and I thought his palette would be the most appropriate, which would be a great homage to Spain. There’s nothing wrong with retro, but it’s time to move ahead into the 21st century. I could have chosen an Art Deco design, but that’s looking back. There will be paintings, sculptures and colored lights.


Q. Are you deliberately trying to be different?


A. It’s not trying to be different, but being special to the city it will sit in. We’ll have colored stone, a plaza in front. I hope it will rejuvenate the area and provide energy for the community. I’m bringing 45 years of architectural experience, a lot of practicalities.


Q. Will you have the pools like at Land Shark Stadium?


A. There will be a beach area, we’ll have pools. A lot of the art elements will be fun, made to make you smile. The central feature will be in center field. We’ll work with Art in Public Places. There are no big outdoor sculptures yet. It’s a new franchise, so we need to give it time. But I want it to be a landmark. I want the experience to change from time to time, with paintings, photographs.


Q. The stadium will be on the site of the old Orange Bowl. Will there be tributes to the football played there?


A. We’ll pay homage to the Orange Bowl. We’re sensitive to the history of the site, the Dolphins, Miami. We see ourselves as the Americas Team.


Q. Will the team have new uniforms?


A. We’re two years away, but we started working on a new look for the uniforms, new colors, something special for the new home. Teal is a color for the ’90s. You have to be cognizant of your time. The seats will be a beautiful shade of blue.


Q. What stadium most closely resembles the Marlins’?


A. I’m interested in the sculptural experience, glass, marble, colored bricks, stones, wood. There’s no stadium that’s out there that approximates it because it will be so white and with primary colors all around. It sort of looks like a spaceship that just landed, something different, something people can call their own.

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