lynn chappy artspark: proposed sculptures & design
Building a park of this magnitude takes a family of committed artists, donors, and community partners. We are tremendously grateful to everyone who is helping to make possible this evolving artistic landscape.
We continue to welcome artists and contributors to share in building ArtsPark. Phase I of ArtsPark is poised to immediately change the appearance of the Wilson Center and Mitchell Park, while subsequent phases will offer expanded programming opportunities—including education, performing and visual arts, community connections, and stewardship and restoration of the environment—allowing Lynn Chappy ArtsPark to increase the outreach of the Wilson Center to the greater region.
ALLÉE - THE WILLIAM AND SANDRA HAACK PROMENADE
The Allée re-envisions The William and Sandra Haack Promenade as our welcoming entrance by adding rainwater, collected from the rooftop, that will flow through a series of artfully designed scuppers and downspouts into a serpentine runnel that reflects the Fox River as it moves gracefully through the space. Artistically designed tree grates, lighting, and mosaics will line the pathway.
ALLÉE - AMPHITHEATER
A 300-person amphitheater near the south end of the Allée will provide highly valued outdoor space. Wood-slatted benches will act as gabions, allowing water to flow through to the soil instead of collecting on the surface.
CENTRAL ENTRY - TRUTH WALL
A greater sense of artistic place will be created along the site line from highly used southern parking lot entry through to the woods to the east. A combination of sculpture, educational, and environmental elements will greatly improve the Central Entry. A Truth Wall is proposed to be built near the south parking lot entry and along the Greenway Trail. This artistic representation of what it would look like if you cut a drumlin in half serves as both art and an educational opportunity to discuss the environment.
CENTRAL ENTRY - SCULPTURE
Several works of art will adorn the visual line from the parking lot entrace to the treeline at the far end of the field. Along the curve of the Greenway Trail, there will be a rotating sculpture location. Every three years, a new large-scale piece of art will entice visitors to discover this area of the park. The first sculpture envisioned for this location is based on a maquette design by Michael Kautzer, The Traveler, which won the Lynn Chappy ArtsPark Summer 2015 Sculpture Contest. Based on the idea of a classroom, the inside of The Traveler will be covered in chalkboard paint to provide children and adults the opportunity to leave their mark. The Traveler provides the community a unique opportunity to essentially have an outdoor gallery and classroom available 24/7. The piece provides the space for dialogue between artists, community members and nature, as well as opportunities for interesting programming for visitors of all ages.
About the artist: A graduate of the UW-Milwaukee School of Architecture, Michael Kautzer has spent the last eight years exploring the concept of "epitecture" or "architecture that relies upon": a concept that focuses on the positive aspects of adding architectural elements to natural and man-made environments. This exploration has produced such projects as FRAME gallery (a backpack-mounted gallery space), Epitectural Blocks (markers of underappreciated spaces), and Neu Museum of Contemporary Art (a museum celebrating the life and times of his grandparents), with each making use of a variety of media/art forms, including: sculpture, performance, and installation.
Including the Gerlach/Haack Outdoor Theater, the section of park east of the Wilson Center building is being developed into a permanent outdoor education and performance area. Already, the land has been regraded to provide a better viewing and audio experience for our Starry Nights free concert series and the Wilson Center Guitar Festival. A permanent band shell and audience cover would expand the potential to offer performances that merit paid admission and serve as a multi-use, welcoming space for students, arts camps, and other educational programs.
RAY CHI CONCEPT
This extraordinary concept by Ray Chi is a delight to viewers of all ages and will be installed at multiple decentralized locations along the existing perimeter path throughout Mitchell Park. It is a field of colorful abstract shapes reaching upward on stainless steel stems, like a field of wildflowers, and is intended to be experienced both close-up and at a distance. At specific locations, the jumble of shapes coalesce into crisp and clearly legible text—verbs that point to the experience of the Wilson Center and what the arts do for us: connect, engage, inspire, transform, and enrich. The sculpture is designed to not compete with the natural serenity and openness of the site. Rather, it embraces these qualities and is designed to coexist naturally with the landscape and building while encouraging viewers to become active participants in discovering the artwork. The community will be further engaged and invested in this sculpture piece by being invited to the Wilson Center to help install the five site locations in a community-wide festival. Once completed and installed, Shifting Perspectives will create a unique sculptural experience that can be enjoyed by all, 365 days a year.