Boise City Hall has a new piece of public art, “Four Stories” by Boise architect and public artist Byron Folwell.
The piece was installed earlier this summer. It focuses on the corner of 6th and Main, where Boise City Hall sits today. The piece explores the many businesses that were located there, including Chinese laundries, a brewery, the brothels of the infamous Levy’s Alley and one of the first headquarters of The Idaho Statesman.
Folwell’s piece, which hangs on the 6th Street side of City Hall, includes imagery that relates to all of those past uses, including the Chinese symbols for “laundry” and cut-outs of irons. Other panels relate to the Bohemian Brewery, including cut-outs of its window pattern, the clock that decorated its tower and its famous cone-topped beer cans. One panel includes a reproduction of the front page of The Idaho Statesman from 1909, the year the city closed down Levy’s Alley.
“Four Stories” is part of a larger renovation of the Boise City Hall Plaza. The City’s Percent for Art program funded the $24,000 piece.
Folwell’s past public art pieces include “Razor Sharp and Fast” at Idaho IceWorld and the “Ghost Trolley,” or historic South Boise streetcar station in Ivywild Park. Folwell is also the city’s art and design consultant for the Idaho Transportation Department’s Broadway Bridge upgrade.