Artist revises structures for Public Square

Wednesday, September 2, 2009 at 6:49pm

 Two towering works by Thomas Sayre

The installation process is beginning soon for two towering works of art to be placed at the Public Square in front of the historic Metro Courthouse downtown.

The Metro Parks Board and the Metro Arts Commission both have given the green light to revised plans by artist Thomas Sayre, who altered his original designs to better fit landscaping which has taken place on the square since 2006.

Sayre will install two 30-foot structures, which will be placed at the southeast and southwest corner of the public square park. The structures will feature cranks, which will allow parkgoers to interact with the art.

A second project, by artist Ken Rowe, is underway as designed. Funding for the project, which will cost about $350,000, was approved in 2006. Since then there was some disagreement over which board, parks or arts, had final approval for the project.

Metro earmarks 1 percent of all proceeds from interest gained on the city’s general obligation bonds to pay for public art.

“We are very pleased that we are now moving forward with the art for our Public Square,” former chair of the Arts Commission’s public art committee Jeff Ockerman said. “Now that the Public Square is complete, fully landscaped and in use, the artist was able to evolve the overall design to make it reflective of the space in a symmetrical sense and the new design will help draw people into the park, which is exactly what a space like this is intended for.”

10 Comments on this post:

By: slzy on 9/2/09 at 6:07

sorta like a busy box for older children?

By: JeffF on 9/3/09 at 8:10

Was the previous design not odd enough? Is there not a local person we can throw obscene amounts at to come up with something weird? I am of the belief that expensive sculpture work should come with a some big piece of pock or metal form. But apparently to serve on the committee you must be required to select works that express weirdness.

Anyway, it is immoral to spend large amounts of taxpayer money on art. These "works" do not improve the lives of anyone living here and will ever live here. Someone simply wanted a slush fund.

By: WayneJ on 9/3/09 at 9:01

It does appear that native Tennesseean Hunter Harrison needs to come to town and fire some people (he is available Jan. 1 after he retires from CEO/Chief Agent of Change at Canadian National Railway) - this is just more wasteful Metro spending. The school board can't get textbooks delivered but we can revise plans for unneeded statues. Seems like more buffalo butts would be cheaper than what's in this article.

By: citizennashville on 9/3/09 at 9:19

Although our students don't have textbooks or qualified teachers, and although the lottery does not appear to have changed our national ratio of intellect. Although our Metro Transit program is in dire need of funds.........
These statues will make for great target practice for those folks "hunting" in our parks.

By: nature on 9/3/09 at 1:22

What in the world? Why us? I'm pretty liberal person in thought and my spiritual beliefs, but...... Does anybody remember the 'sculpture' on the roundabout. Porno in freeze frame? (If I had made that, I'm quite sure I'd be arrested for something.) That's bad enough. The twisted railroad 'sculpture'? The strange alien 'sculpture' at Vandy over by Hillsboro Village. I think the people in charge want us to look like we are just too cool city and need this art to reflect it. Now I need some type of therapy everytime I drive by the roundabout. I'll send Metro the bill.
Oh, Metro read the opinions above, they have come up alot of very good questions. More to think about, remember our population of homeless and abused animals? Dogs running in packs? Feral cats having litters of more feral cats? But, remember the children, they are our future. Screw you Metro and your 'sculptures'!

By: trtay2004 on 9/3/09 at 3:45

I like it.

By: Nashville SEO on 9/3/09 at 3:45

Waaait a minute, shouldn't the city finish the rollercoaster down by the riverfront, before making a gigantic version of rock em sock em robots?

Matthew Freeman

By: NewYorker1 on 9/4/09 at 8:02

They can use my tax dollars for public art. I'd rather see my money going to public art than to the school system. At least with the art, I can enjoy some of my tax dollars instead of kids who don't appreciate what they have and don't respect adults anymore.

By: Time for Truth on 9/4/09 at 9:33

I'm sure the art slush fund will be diverted to help pay for the massive sucking hole that will be the Music City Center soon enough. Perhaps a sculpture depicting a white elephant can be placed there first.

I like the sculpture on the roundabout, it certainly makes a statement.

I still think the best pieces of public art are the snowball throwing bears and the train and jet in Centennial Park (lol).

By: Time for Truth on 9/4/09 at 9:35

It's too bad the cranks can't control the arms. All sorts of possibilities there, including perhaps a Michael Jackson tribute pose.