Sculptfusion Public Art Exhibit to Debut June 20 with Eight Works

By: Contributor Last Updated: June 5, 2013

Sculptfusion-Two-to-TangoThe Michigan City Public Art Committee and Mayor Ron Meer, (MAC) has announced the debut of a year-long exhibit of eight works of sculpture, which will contribute to the beautification of Michigan City and highlight the vitality of the Uptown Arts District, Washington Park and other high-visibility locations near Lake Michigan.

According to MAC President, Carolyn Saxton, “This is a first major multi-piece outdoor sculpture exhibition in our community, which will contribute to the vitality of Michigan City and serve as a focal point for exciting contemporary visual art. Sculptfusion will undoubtedly bring art seekers and tourists of all ages to our city.”

The presence of outdoor public art has been cited often by residents as a desired addition to the community’s environs as noted recently by consultants for the city.

Michigan City has enjoyed the presence of individual public sculptures in several locations for some time, but Sculptfusion is the first major show for eight works of art to be featured in the year-long exhibition,” says Saxton.

The committee juried and chose the 8 sculptures from a field of almost 50 pieces submitted from the Midwest region of the country. Sculptors who will be a part of Sculptfusion 2013-2014 are:

Nicole Beck—Asteray joins stainless steel and epoxied mosaic. Chicago artist, Beck says “This organic sculpture features both botanical and astronomical references as the wildflower “Prairie Smoke; and as an asteroid just prior to earthy impact.”

Sculptfusion-Whispering-StonesJan Dean—Chorus is a large cast bronze sculpture in abstract organic form. According to the South Bend-based artist, his artwork is about community, what makes it, where the individual stand in it and what holds it together. He seeks balance between what is known and what is unknown.

Michael Grucza—Flip Flop is fabricated aluminum which stands 8 feet high by 5 feet wide. According to the Chicago-based artist his work is created to engage viewers of all interests and invite them to interact with his work. He seeks to incorporate humor and a sense of play and wonder in his work.

Douglas Gruizenga—Duet is constructed from welded aluminum with two neck and head sections representing string instruments. The Interlochen, Michigan-based artist hopes his sculpture is pleasing to the eye, without limiting the observer’s creative ability to interpret the subject matter. He attempts to allow each viewer to bring with them their own individual experience and understanding when they view his work.

Terrence Karpowicz—Mount is a piece constructed of granite, steel and polymer. The Chicago-based artist states that he was influenced by the theories and practices of Minimalism and Conceptualism of the 1970s. Mount is man’s aspiration to achieve great heights.

Richard Kiebdaj—Two to Tango is made of fabricated steel painted with epoxy undercoat with a hi-solid urethane finish. It depicts two wine bottle openers used anthropomorphically, dancing the tango. According to the Beverly Shores, Indiana-based artist, the sculpture is a social commentary on relations.

Kees Ouwens—Whispering Stones is made of steel with stone sculptures. A self-taught sculptor based in Blissfield, Michigan with roots in Japanese gardens, Ouwens describes his piece and its tall dimensions as creating very interesting shadow patterns on the surfaces surrounding it that change through the day and through the seasons.

Ken Thompson—Thin Series: Off the Diet is carved granite. According to the Blissfield, a Michigan artist, he sees each project as a “clean sheet of paper” that presents new opportunities to discover sculptural solutions.

In addition to two sculptures being placed in Washington Park, one will be located at Charles R. Wescott Park, one at the northwest corners of the intersections of Franklin and Fifth, Sixth, Eighth, and Ninth streets as well as on the west side of Franklin between Eighth and Ninth streets.

Brochures describing the works will be available at several locations, such as the Michigan City Public Library, The LaPorte County Conventions and Visitors Bureau, Lubeznik Center for the Arts. For more information, contact Carolyn Saxton at 219-874-4900.