Annual Art in Public Spaces Sculptures Positioned Downtown

Adam Garey, Deflection, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, Arpil 2019

Each spring in east Tennessee we are privy to a beautiful transformation. Daffodils spring up, soon we enjoy the Redbuds, followed by the Dogwoods. Sure, we have our share (or more) of pollen accompanying each shift in foliage, but the beauty offsets the pain.

In the midst of the natural transformation, we have a man-made shifting of the seasons as Dogwood Arts and Art in Public Places removes the previous year’s sculptures and replaces them with fresh, often interesting, new works. The works are spread around the region, but the largest number are positioned downtown, mostly in Krutch Park.

Charlie Brouwer, At Home With Higher Thoughts, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Coral Lamber, Space Diamond, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Coral Lamber, Space Diamond, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Douglas Gruizenga, An Acient Relic from Our Distant Future, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Sculptor John Douglas Powers served as this year’s judge. Jacob Stanley served as chair of the committee this year and sponsors included Central Business Improvement District, Commercial Metals Inc, Downtown Knoxville Alliance, Metropolitan Knoxville Airport Authority,  ORNL Federal Credit Union, Prestige Cleaners, UT Gardens, and Zoo Knoxville. Kate Creason with Dogwood Arts also works to bring the sculptures to our city.

This year’s artists include Elizabeth Akamatsu, Charlie Brouwer, Jacob Burmood, Rondell Crier, Adam Gary, Douglas Gruizenga, Paul Higham, Hanna Jubran, Coral Lamber, Nicole Beck, Thomas Riefe, Fisher Stolz, Will Vannerson, Steven Durrow and Shawn Morin. The works not pictured here are located (or will soon be located) in area locations outside downtown.

Elizabeth Akamatsu, White Stardust, Art in Public Places, Krutch Park, Knoxville, April 2019

Fisher Stolz, Discovery, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Fisher Stolz, Discovery, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Hanna Jubran, Motion Light, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

As always, the works will elicit a range of responses. We’ll each have different opinions and preferences. Art serves a range of functions, from simple pleasure and delight to profound challenges as we ponder what the artist intended and what each piece says to us personally. I’ll have my favorites and so will you.

Nicole Beck, Fistacuffs, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Paul Higham, Spiral Jette, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Rondell Crier, Reflect Beyond, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Rondell Crier, Reflect Beyond, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

One observation from years of watching the sculptures come and go: They serve a great function for, not only locals, but for tourists. I often find out-of-town guests wandering among the sculptures, pondering them and delighted to have stumbled into a small sculpture garden in Krutch Park. The program is a good bonus for tourists.

Thomas Riefe, Portal, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

Will Vannerson, Ecstatic Crepitacean, Art in Public Places, Knoxville, April 2019

If you don’t live or work downtown, you’ll have a great chance to explore the sculptures this coming weekend when the annual culminating weekend for the Dogwood Arts Festival as the festival spreads our around the center of downtown this coming weekend, April 26 – 28. You’ll find a wealth of arts, music and fun for the entire family and it’s free.

For those who live and work downtown, or come down more frequently, take a quiet moment and thoughtfully examine the artists’ work in person. Photographs can capture the scale and detail you’ll find directly. It’s worth the time to examine another piece of what makes spring in Knoxville just a little more special.

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  1. Always enjoy your information about Knoxville.

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