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NEWS
February 25, 2005
Did you decide that you just couldn't miss The Gates in New York? What did you think about the display of saffron flags lining the walkways of Central Park? Not that you need to leave South Jersey to get a look at public art - or to have an opinion about it. Community Voices is looking for essays of about 400 to 700 words on The Gates or any public art in the region. Do you have a favorite, or does one capture your attention even if you don't care for it? Send your essays or ideas to Community Voices, The Inquirer, 53 Haddonfield Rd., Suite 300, Cherry Hill, N.J. 08002.
NEWS
December 27, 1998
With the unveiling of the Frank Rizzo statue on the steps of the Municipal Services Building planned for Jan. 1, this question comes to mind: What other works of art do the public spaces of the city and suburbs need? What person, event or thing would you like to see so honored in your neighborhood? Why? Send essays of 100 words or less by Jan. 11, including a phone number for verification, to Community Voices/Heroes at the addresses listed in the Where to Write box above. Questions?
NEWS
September 3, 1988
Driving across the Ben Franklin Bridge and seeing the city's skyline arrayed before you makes a marvelous introduction to Philadelphia - a promise of urban excitement after an enervating journey through South Jersey's commercial sprawl. As new projects spring up along the waterfront, billboards disappear and Vine Street goes post-modern with sweeping ramps and new landscaping, that impression is bound to get even better. But let's face it, there is one eyesore at the very entrance to the city that acts as an immediate depressant, and nobody to date has done anything about it. That's because Isamu Noguchi's Bolt of Lightning . . . A Memorial to Benjamin Franklin falls into the untouchable realm of art. The 102-foot-high statue, for all the genius, money and good will that went in to its creation, looks like a crumpled piece of metal - less a salute to the great inventor than to the city's oversupply of litter.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 19, 2011 | By REBECCA ALLEN, The Orange County Register
SEATTLE - Hulking under the Aurora Bridge in Seattle is a 7-ton troll clutching a real Volkswagen Beetle, as if it snagged it off the roadway above. And incidentally, the VW has a California license plate. The statue, made of rebar steel, wire and concrete, is at Troll Way and 36th Street in the funky, artistic neighborhood of Fremont. One of the delights of visiting the Northwest is the vast array of public art. Some of it, like the Fremont Troll, is fun. Some is thought-provoking; some stirs controversy.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 3, 1997 | By Leonard W. Boasberg, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A relief mural spreads 81 feet along the limestone wall of a community center in East Los Angeles. It commemorates the life of a mid-19th-century black woman named Biddy Mason. There's a wagon wheel, symbolizing her trek by wagon train from Texas to Los Angeles, where she won her freedom in a landmark case. There are bonded photos of her freedom papers and of the deed to her homestead, which once stood on the site. There's a midwife's bag, symbolizing her service as a midwife bringing hundreds of babies into the world.
NEWS
August 8, 1999
What do we want to leave for future generations? What about our community might inspire a work of public art? How can we improve our public spaces? Over the past year, communities and artists participating in the Fairmount Park Art Association's NewLandMarks program have been grappling with these challenging questions to plan new works of public art for sites throughout Philadelphia. To spread the word about the NewLandMarks program, the art association held community meetings at Free Library branches throughout the city.
NEWS
October 1, 2012 | By Edward J. Sozanski, Contributing Art Critic
Making art that serves the people is a noble goal, yet as both the Bolsheviks and the Mexican muralists discovered in the last century, it's not easy to accomplish. The art of the Russian avant-garde proved to be too radical aesthetically, that of the muralists too extreme politically. With a "light-sculpture" project on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway called Open Air , Rafael Lozano-Hemmer has succeeded in bridging the considerable gap between aesthetic ambition and public taste.
NEWS
May 8, 2002
PICTURED at right is our suggestion for one piece of public art that would be fitting for the outside of the new Phillies and Eagles stadiums. It's by one of Philadelphia's favorite artists, Claes Oldenburg, creator of "Clothespin," that iconic sculpture in Center City. This piece is called "Soft Screw. " As documented by Don Russell in yesterday's Daily News, the public, which is heavily bankrolling the construction of our new $1 billion in stadiums, has been shut out of the selection or approval of the public art that will grace the grounds of those new playing fields.
NEWS
January 17, 2012
WE GIVE A hearty thumbs-up to whatever smart person decided that it was time for a Zoe Strauss photography exhibit (at the Philadelphia Museum of Art until April 22) and two thumbs-up for Strauss herself, who thought of displaying her images on 54 billboards around the city. There are many wonderful aspects of this very public, very temporary way of displaying art. First, we wish more billboards were devoted to art and fewer to strictly commercial messages. We need more presence of art in our lives, and billboards are a great canvas for high-impact works; it's a perfect way to have art confront us where we live, rather than confined to the walls of museums and galleries.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
July 25, 2015 | By Stephan Salisbury, Inquirer Staff Writer
With imminent renovation of the two-block-long Gallery mall on Market Street, its owners are faced with a vexing problem: What to do about the public art installed decades ago, fruit of the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority's Percent-for-Art program? All public art in the Gallery must be removed by the end of November, according to the authority. As of now, none of the work has officially found a new home. One piece is of particular concern to officials - Larry Rivers' massive tile mural, Philadelphia Now and Then , which not only faces homelessness, but has suffered serious damage over the years.
NEWS
July 3, 2015 | By Maria Panaritis, Inquirer Staff Writer
It seemed to Philadelphia Art Commission members a curious notion: SugarHouse Casino was asking for approval to finance a documentary and annual film festival to meet its mandate to invest in public art. Members were receptive Wednesday, but had questions: How does a $100,000 film about the history of Philadelphia as a onetime motion picture mecca constitute public art? How, unlike the LOVE statue, would it be visible to the public? Would such a project endure for years? "What assurances has the city . . . that this is going to be lasting?"
NEWS
June 18, 2015 | By Erin Edinger-Turoff, Inquirer Staff Writer
Next summer, the Benjamin Franklin Parkway will host a new urban curiosity: glowing, inhabitable sculptures that will carry visitors from City Hall to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The moving illuminants will traverse the concrete jungle as part of an Association of Public Art (aPA) exhibit called Fireflies by Cai Guo-Qiang, a New York-based artist. The exhibit, a world premiere, is made possible in part by a grant from the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage. The grant is for $300,000.
REAL_ESTATE
May 31, 2015 | By Catherine Laughlin, For The Inquirer
Artsy. Edgy. Transitional. Distinctive tags describing Old City. But Ted Newbold, who owns a rowhouse here with wife Helen Cunningham, called the area home back when descriptions such as warehouse and fashionable weren't commingled. Newbold, 84, an urban pioneer, is a descendant of Nathan Trotter, founder of Nathan Trotter & Co. Inc., a metal-products company established on Front Street in 1789. In the 1950s, he worked for the firm and lived in Society Hill and on Elfreth's Alley.
NEWS
May 1, 2015 | By Stephan Salisbury, Inquirer Culture Writer
The Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania has received a gift of $10 million to enhance the scope and flexibility of its curatorial efforts, ICA director Amy Sadao announced Wednesday. The gift comes from a longtime ICA supporter and board member, the philanthropist and collector Daniel W. Dietrich II. The gift, which doubles the institute's endowment, is the second instance of Dietrich-funded cultural philanthropy to come to light this week. On Monday, the Association for Public Art announced that Dietrich had donated funds to acquire sculptor Roxy Paine's silvery Symbiosis , which has been temporarily installed near the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The tree-like stainless steel sculpture will now remain permanently in place.
NEWS
April 29, 2015 | By Stephan Salisbury, Inquirer Staff Writer
The shimmering silver broken tree, a monumental sculpture by the artist Roxy Paine that has been on view near the Philadelphia Museum of Art for nearly a year, has been acquired by the Association for Public Art and will remain permanently installed, association officials announced Monday afternoon. The acquisition was made possible by a grant from the Daniel W. Dietrich II Trust. Penny Balkin Bach, the association's executive director, said that "sometimes dreams come true" - the dream, in this case, being acquisition of what the internationally known Paine calls Symbiosis.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 2014 | By Natalie Pompilio, For The Inquirer
A few years ago, Jerry Jackson's math students at Olney's Grover Washington Jr. Middle School had problems understanding the coordinate grid. X-axis, Y-axis, it didn't matter. They couldn't get their heads around plot points floating in space. Then artist Ben Volta joined Jackson in the classroom with city maps - another sort of grid. Soon, the students were charged with finding and marking meaningful places on their maps, like Grandma's house, the airport, the Liberty Bell, the school.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 25, 2014 | By Samantha Melamed, Inquirer Staff Writer
In a shady corner of Rittenhouse Square, as summer eased into fall, Eli Green was racing around the curved benches that encircle Billy , the bronze goat that guards the corner of the park. His mother, Jackie Green, stopped him short with a question: "Eli, how old do you think the goat is?" Without a pause, Eli answered gleefully: "3½!" "He's 100!" Green said. But Eli was resolute: "No! He's 3½ like me. " Kid logic aside, Billy, cast by Philadelphia sculptor Albert Laessle in 1914, does indeed turn 100 this year.
NEWS
February 7, 2014 | By Marie McCullough, Inquirer Staff Writer
PHILADELPHIA More than two years ago, the University of Pennsylvania announced a project to expand the use of portable heart-shocking defibrillators with a new smartphone application. That app is still "a few months" from being ready, according to project director Raina Merchant. But on Thursday, Penn plans to announce a lower-tech approach to promoting automatic external defibrillator (AED) use: a contest to develop "public art" that would call attention to the devices. Or at least some devices.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2014 | BY SHAUN BRADY, For the Daily News
Whether you're there to vent your frustration at City Council, report for the drudgery of jury duty or, worse yet, winding up on the other side of the court system, there are plenty of reasons to be unhappy about visiting City Hall and its neighboring municipal buildings. But, instead of tweeting your complaints the next time you find yourself there, you can now use your smartphone to explore the stunning public artwork in and around the historic building. What was the inspiration behind Robert Indiana's iconic LOVE statue?
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