By Barbara La Valleur
Alert residents, shoppers and visitors to Edina will notice new sculptures popping up while others are leaving the three locations at 50th & France, GrandView Square and the Promenade in preparation for the 2014 Edina Sculpture Exhibit opening Wednesday, June 18, with an artist reception sponsored by Pinstripes from 5-7 p.m. The public is invited.
May is the time when about 12 sculptures rotate off their locations and we welcome the installations of 12 new ones. The exhibit includes several pieces that are unlike any we’ve exhibited before along with a few traditional bronze, patina and steel artworks.
This year’s exhibit is sure to delight and surprise the public in its diversity and range of artistic talent. Exhibiting artists include Nick Legeros and Kevin Komadina of Edina; Joel Carter and Allison Ruby of Minneapolis; Chris Gustafson, Watkins, Minn.; Jim Gabbert and Peter Vanni, both of Eden Prairie. Other artists from out of state are James Bearden of Iowa; Steve Elliott of Nebraska and Jim Denhe and Michael E. Kmiotek of Wisconsin.
“Honk!,” a whimsical large red horn of welded steel by Chris Gustafson (the artist of last year’s dragon called “Escaped from the Depths”), was the first to be installed and is located by the fountain at 50th & France. Peter Vanni followed with “Roman Astrolabe” to be found on the Promenade by Yorktown Plaza.
Steve Elliott installed “Mantle” on May 16 followed by Jim Gabbert’s installment of “Faith, Hope, Love” on May 17, both on the Promenade.
Nick Legeros’ bronze “Leaping Hare” is enchanting GrandView Square residents as well as library and senior center visitors after its installation the week of May 18.
“Three Dancing Sand Hill Cranes” arrived during the week of May 18 at 50th and Halifax Ave. S., and will add excitement to the new location near U.S. Bank.
James Bearden, a familiar Edina public art exhibitor, is the only artist to have two pieces this year. “Dynamic Duo” on the Promenade and “Argonaut” at GrandView, were installed May 20 and are evidence of this artist’s evolving style.
This year’s exhibit will also see the first collaboration of two returning artists, Kevin Komadina and Joel Carter, both physicians, and both of whom have previously donated their sculptures to the city. The piece, appropriately titled “Medicine Wheel,” will be installed on the Promenade near Target May 22-23. The collaborative piece will be familiar with those who know Komadina’s “Three Trees” and Carter’s “The Healing.”
Allison Ruby’s “Density Housing for the Modern Urban Fairy” will arrive on the Promenade May 29.
Two of the 2013 People’s Choice Award winners will continue to be part of this year’s exhibit. They are “Number Seven,” a life-sized horse made of horseshoes by Kristen Piersa Kregel of Bloomington, located at GrandView Square. The other is “Leap Frog” by Arthur Norby of New London, located on the Promenade.
Public Art Edina is part of the Edina Arts and Culture Commission and is celebrating its 10th year. The first sculpture exhibit was in 2006.
All sculptures are available to purchase for private ownership or as gifts to the city through the Edina Community Foundation.
Barbara La Valleur is chair of the Edina Public Art Committee.