Art installation begins at new city complex
Date: Wednesday, November 17, 2010
The art of Steve Gillman, Po Shu Wang and Louise Bertelsen of Living Lenses is being installed on the grounds of Wylie’s new municipal complex.
The two commissioned pieces valued at $290,000 are part of the city’s program that dedicates 1 percent of project costs to public art.
“The entire Wylie community should be proud of these works of art,” said Mayor Eric Hogue. “The level of community participation and input that helped shape the two projects was unprecedented; they truly are the peoples’ work developed in the spirit of public art.”
“The Gillman and Wang pieces are already generating a buzz throughout the Metroplex and beyond,” said Councilwoman and Public Arts Advisory Board member Kathy Spillyards. “Between the original art work and the architecture, the new civic complex will quickly become a destination for art admirers, photographers and families.”
Site #1, Artist Steve Gillman
Prominently located in a grassy area in the main parking lot directly in front of the recreation center, art site #1 will be visible from both 1378 and from inside the three buildings. The sculpture consists of seven granite monoliths spaced over 385 feet in an arithmetical progression.
The columns range in height from 13 to 18 feet and weigh more than 35,000 pounds each. Three sides of each column will remain natural with the fourth side machined smooth featuring engraved quotes pulled from Wylie’s rich history. A 12-foot- wide path will lead visitors through the monoliths to the municipal complex. The columns will be lit from below highlighting their presence on the site.
“This piece is about the site, and the city; its past and present, its people, and its nature as a modern civic center,” said Gillman. “Its monumentality lends dignity and a sense of place while inviting visitors into the new Wylie Municipal Complex.”
Gillman is an award-winning and recognized artist with many years of experience in public art.
In 2008, Gillman was recognized by the Americans for the Arts for having one of the best public art projects of the year.
Pictures of past installations and detailed biographical information can be found at www.gillmankeefer.com.
Site #2, Artist Po Shu Wang & Louise Bertelsen, Living Lenses
Located in the breezeway between the library and recreation center, art site #2 will be the focal point for both children and adults.
The selected sculpture by Wang & Bertelsen is an interactive 13-foot-wide by 7-foot-tall sequence of hemispheres spiraling toward each other surrounding a complete sphere at the center.
The polished, stainless steel piece will conceal an outdoor speaker connected to two keyboards: one in the community center and one in the Smith Public Library. Visitors will be invited to type their thoughts, expressions and emotions, which will be translated into Braille text dots and turned into music through an electronic sampler.
“Voices of the community will drive an on-going symphony that is Wylie’s very own; right from the mouth of the people … that is the sole content of the music,” said Wang. “The body from the recreation center and the mind from the library will come together as a whole being.”
Living Lenses describes themselves as an on-going exploration of the world we live in, the world we live by, and the world we dream of.
The artists’ promotional materials say, “Media and methodology that we use are borrowed from all aspects of human ingenuity and stupidity, and they are in continuous evolution guided by the uniqueness of every site we encounter.”
More details on Wang and Bertelson of Living Lenses can be found on the website www.livinglenses.com.
Staff received more than 155 submissions for the two sites during the call for artists
Final installation of the two works of art is tentatively scheduled for the grand opening of the buildings.
This article courtesy Craig Kelly, Wylie Public information office.
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