“What happens when someone strikes a match” or “how fire triggers a smoke detector” are not topics that weigh heavily on an artist’s brain. But neighborhood resident Art Garcia is taking a left-brain approach to a right-brain endeavor in a public artwork project for the new Fire Station 33 at Illinois and Vernon. Commissioned by the city of Dallas, the installation will be a canopy of translucent panels that showcase the science of fire fighting, says Garcia, founder of advertising agency Graphic Content. “So, for instance, we have a match that is combusting, and we show the formula for combustion; then we have a scuba apparatus, and in that one we’re showing the chemical compound that helps firefighters breathe; then certainly a smoke detector, because that’s a big problem in any community,” Garcia says. It’s his fourth public art project in Dallas, and the number of elementary students who visit fire stations on field trips is not lost on Garcia. “Hopefully it will inspire these kids to take up science or fire fighting,” he says. Or perhaps art? “There you go,” says Garcia, who says he’s just a kid at heart — he still plays with crayons. —KERI MITCHELL
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