Friday, July 26, 2013

Olympia Public Art Along Percival Landing

Above: People walking along Percival Landing tonight look at a sculpture titled "Throes," by Willow Wicklund. Cynthia Mitchell, left, and Haneen Aibak, red shirt, both of Olympia, stopped by the exhibits.

by Janine Unsoeld

The City of Olympia and members of the city Arts Commission tonight hosted a grand opening for a new round of public art currently featured on Percival Landing. Twelve loaned sculptures along Percival Landing, from Bayview Thriftway to Budd Bay Café, are on display.

The public is invited to vote for the 2013 People's Choice Sculpture Award from today through August 31, using ballots located along Percival Landing. The sculpture with the most votes will be purchased by the City of Olympia and installed in another location following the exhibition. Olympia residency is not required to vote, however, it is required that all sculptures be viewed in person before your ballot is turned in.

Tonight, Cynthia Mitchell and Haneen Aibak indicated that they were both impressed with "Throes," a steel and bronze sculpture by Willow Wicklund. The artwork evoked emotion in Aibak.

"I wish I was taller so I could see his face," she said. "The fact that he's looking up means hope, or maybe he's looking for his friend, an alien," Aibak laughed.

"No, hope," she decided after further interpretation. "Hope that the clouds will clear, the sun will shine, and the rays will embrace my face."

Above: Artist Lin Rebolini McJunkin cleans her artwork, "Kelp Totem III: Orca" on Percival Landing tonight.
Artist Lin Rebolini McJunkin was seen cleaning her steel and glass sculpture, "Kelp Totem III: Orca" tonight. Rebolini McJunkin, of Conway, says her piece was inspired by her appreciation of  Coastal Salish Native American art.
"This is my interpretation of an orca," she said. The piece uses green and purple powder mixed together with recycled chunks of broken glass, which Rebolini McJunkin then mixed up, put into a mold, and into a kiln. The process is called pate de verre, meaning paste of glass.
The bladder of the kelp shown a brilliant green and purple against the setting sun. She said she is very pleased with where her piece was located by the city, near the bridge.
"I couldn't have picked a better place," she said. Rebolini McJunkin's work is also featured in several other cities in Washington and Idaho. One of her pieces just won the People's Choice award in Auburn, she said. Her smaller, more intimate pieces are featured at Childhood's End Gallery in Olympia.
The People's Choice winner will be announced at the Olympia City Council meeting on October 1, 2013. Sculptures not awarded the award may be purchased after July 2014.

For more information, contact Stephanie Johnson, City of Olympia Arts & Events Program Manager, Park, Arts and Recreation Department, at (360) 709-2678 or go to