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SPACE announces public art winner

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Two murals by Chad Elliott will adorn the walls of the new Spencer Community Theatre lobby as a result of SPACE's second public art project. They will be paid for in part by funds from the city of Spencer administered by SPACE and a Renaissance Initiative Grant.
(Artwork submitted)
Elliott's pieces to be featured in SCT lobby

The Spencer Alliance for a Creative Economy (SPACE) has selected a winner in the second SPACE public work of art project.

The winning entry was a pair of murals representing the theatrical arts for installation in the new lobby of the Spencer Community Theatre (SCT), submitted by Chad Elliott. Each of the acrylic on canvas murals will measure 5 feet tall by 12 feet wide, and will be hung on the north and south walls of the lobby. Aesthetically, they will match the design of the lobby while still retaining Elliott's unique style. The murals will be painted on-site between mid-December 2011 and mid-January 2012.

As an added educational component, Elliott will offer area school art departments the opportunity to view him in process at SCT to learn about large-scale mural making.

The purpose of the project was to provide funds to commission a public work of art in Spencer. Three entries were submitted this year by artists from as far away as Des Moines. A committee composed of members of the SPACE board, local artists, community members, and a high school art student made the final selection.

Partial funding for the artwork will come from the city of Spencer through SPACE and a Renaissance Initiative Grant. SCT will provide additional funding to help pay for the murals.

Elliott, a Coon Rapids resident, was artist-in-residence at Arts on Grand from 2005-2008. He was a crew member with Andy Goldsworthy on the public art project of the "Three Cairns" for the Des Moines Art Center permanent art collection, and has created large murals for businesses, including Shaky Tree Coffee in Spencer. His Artsong series of acrylic paintings inspired by his original music was unveiled at an exhibit at Arts on Grand in January 2009, and has since been exhibited at the Pearson Lakes Art Center in Okoboji and the Witter Gallery in Storm Lake. He also created the original "People Project" ephemeral artwork for ArtsLIVE in January 2008.

Two other proposals were submitted. Des Moines sculptor John Brommel submitted a proposal to create a piece of art to be located at the Curiel Reynolds School of Visual Arts, titled "Birth by Fire." The third proposal came from Craig Thilges and Gary French of Hillcrest Forge in Arnolds Park. It was a life-size stainless steel sculpture of a young skateboarder grinding a rail, and would have been placed near the skate park at East Leach Park.

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