There can be only one

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The public is invited to have its say on what St. Albert’s next piece of public art is going to be, and where. The city is hosting a special panel presentation on Wednesday,  at the Arden Theatre when the audience will meet the four finalists of a recent survey and see what each of them has to offer.

Klara Manhal, the city’s public art associate, said that while usually these decisions are made by the public art committee, the public’s opinion has always mattered.

“We have always incorporated the community into our public art projects,” she said. “What’s special about this particular project is that we are expanding and building on the community engagement.”

In August, the city received submissions of proposals for a new contribution to the Art in Public Places collection, one that would tie in to the recognition of Canada’s 150th anniversary. People were also asked where they wanted some new art out of three choices.

Four shortlisted artists from across the country are now set to show each of their artwork concept designs. It will be the first time that the detailed artwork visual aids will be made available for viewing. Two of the artists will make proposals for the St. Anne Street roundabout while the other two are proposing for the green space along Mission Avenue.

The evening will start with a wine and cheese reception at 5:30 p.m. followed by the artist presentations at 6:30 p.m. Those artists include the team of Jean-François Cooke and Pierre Sasseville from Québec City, Douglas Bentham of Saskatoon, Gerald Beaulieu of Prince Edward Island, and Ontario’s Gordon Reeve. Collectively, they bring a treasure trove of experience and talent that will surely make for challenging and lively conversation.

Each will present for 15 minutes and there will be a five-minute question period afterward.

“It will be a really exciting evening to provide the public an opportunity to dive deeper into how the art concepts have been produced.”

The public’s input will then be considered by the jury the next day when it meets to deliberate on choosing the top of the crop. There is no charge but people are asked to pre-register their attendance. Visit www.stalbert.ca/exp/arden/events/public-art-presentations for more details including background information on the Art in Public Places program and the four shortlisted artists.

Speaking of public art

The City of St. Albert unveiled its second new piece of public art this month with a ceremony on Monday. William Frymire’s In Motion has been placed at the new amenities building at Larry Olexiuk Field on Riel Drive.

The weekend prior, the McCann family were on hand at the Grandin Pond Eco Park to unveil Darling, a 1,200-kg granite and bronze sculpture of two loons created by British Columbia art team Mary-Ann Liu and Paul Slipper. That work has since been put into storage for the winter to leave time for the site to be better prepared for the work’s permanent installation in the spring.

VASA artist gets a fine prize

The International Society Of Experimental Artists (ISEA) announced that Rick Rogers took the Merit Award during the organization’s 26th annual Art Exhibition held at BigArts on Sanibel Island in Florida earlier this month.

His work entitled Ontogenesis is described as his “response to Canada’s 150th anniversary of confederation. All nations are ever-changing. Some underpinnings of culture, good and bad, are persistent; new complexities and challenges arise every year. Canada may not be the same nation as even a generation ago, but its beauty and our optimism remain.”

He explained that it is the result of years of experimentation with materials, media and methods. He even developed his own tools and techniques to achieve the desired effects shown in the work.

The exhibition will stay on display until Thurs., Nov. 30.

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About Author

Scott Hayes

Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.