A familiar and iconic sight to hundreds of thousands of Coachella festivalgoers, and the millions more who followed the concerts virtually, #sarbaleke, is putting down stakes in Indio.
By a unanimous vote of 5-0 Wednesday evening, Indio City Councilmembers approved a contract with festival promoter Goldenvoice to acquire and install the towering Sarbalé Ke (pronounced Sar-ball-ay-Kay) sculpture series in the heart of Indio.
Sarbalé Ke (the House of Celebration) a group of nine towers, ranging in height from nine to 49 feet, is the city’s largest scale public art project to date, and will soon take up residence at Dr. Carreon Park. The location, adjacent to Dr. Carreon Blvd. and east of Monroe Street, will maximize public access of this significant and prominent artwork to park users and neighboring communities.
Goldenvoice has gifted Sarbalé Ke to Indio for a period of ten years, satisfying a long-term goal of Berlin-based, Burkina Faso native, artist and architect Francis Kéré (Care-A). Kéré stated he wanted to home the pieces in the Coachella Valley following their premiere at the world famous music festival in 2019.
Installation is expected to begin in early December and will precede significant enhancements to Dr. Carreon Park in 2020, including the creation of a soccer field, new landscaping, and the addition of benches and tables. The work will be performed by Coachella Valley contractors at a cost of $308,038, taken from Indio’s Art in Public Places fund. This fund is paid through fees from developers of new projects in Indio.
Additional images and quotes are available on request, all images courtesy of Goldenvoice.
Debra Alleyne, Public Art and Historic Preservation Management Analyst