Little Rock Culture Vulture

Cultural events, places and people in the Little Rock area


“A” is for winner

­­­­2017 Prize ShachtmanStephen Shachtman was named as the recipient of a $60,000 commission on Sunday at the conclusion of the 2017 Sculpture at the River Market.  His sixteen foot sculpture composed of CorTen steel, bronze and slate is entitled “A.”  It will be placed at the Southwest Community Center (6401 West Baseline Road) in 2018.

Shachtman’s sculpture captures the varied activities of the Southwest Community Center site.  The convergence of these functions is represented by the central sphere which represents the community coming together.  The layers of the sandstone in the sphere reflect the variety of people who make up the community.  The steel and bronze portion of the “A” represents Arkansas.

It will be fabricated in CorTen steel with a bronze cap at the point of each pillar.  The tallest form measures approximately sixteen (16) feet high.  The overall footprint will be approximately ten (10) feet in diameter.

Sculptors who were juried in to participate in the 2016 Show and Sale were invited to submit proposals for the new commission. A committee reviewed the 29 submissions and narrowed them down to seven semi-finalists. The semi-finalist proposals were on display Friday, April 21, during the preview party. Guests at the party had the opportunity to review the proposals and then to vote. Following that, the three finalists were announced.  In addition to Shachtman, the other finalists were Jack Hill and Ted Schaal.  A panel of judges selected the winner from the three finalists.

City Director Dean Kumpuris, one of the founders of Sculpture at the River Market discussed the location selection.  “Over the past few years we have started placing sculpture throughout Little Rock.  When thinking about the location for the installation in 2018, the Southwest Community Center immediately came to mind.”

“Not only is there an active community center at that location,” he continued, “it is also home to the Police Department’s Southwest precinct.  The Dee Brown branch of CALS is located there and just recently expanded.  In addition to an office of the County Health Department, Arkansas Children’s Hospital is building a clinic out there.  This collection of recreational, educational, safety, and health resources makes this location an important spot not only for Southwest Little Rock, but all Little Rock.”

Shacthman’s “A” will join six other sculptures that have been recognized previously with the commissions through the Sculpture at the River Market’s Public Art Monument Sculpture Competition.

*       The 2011 winner was Chapel, whose work The Center was installed near the Junction Bridge.

*       In 2012 the recipient was Bryan Massey’s Nautilus. This was installed to the north of the Marriott Hotel near the new children’s spray fountain.

*       The 2013 winner was Ted Schaal for his piece Open Window which was placed near the La Petite Roche plaza and First Security Amphitheatre.

*       Lorri Acott’s Peace was the 2014 commission winner; it is sited at the southeast corner of Main and 2nd Streets.

*       Michael Warrick’s Mockingbird Tree, the 2015 winner, is installed at the corner of Chenal Parkway and Chenal Valley Drive.

*        Clay Enoch’s United, which won in 2016, will be installed at Central High School in September 2017 as part of the activities to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the integration of that school

Advertisements


Finalists for $60,000 Sculpture Competition Announced

The winner of a $60,000 commission to place a sculpture at the Southwest Community Center in 2018 will be announced on Sunday, April 23, 2017, as the 10th Sculpture at the River Market Show and Sale concludes.

The three semifinalists for the 2017 Sculpture at the River Market Public Monument Competition were announced Friday night at the conclusion of the Preview Party for the 2017 Sculpture at the River Market Show and Sale. The three semifinalists are:

  • Jack Hill – “On a Roll”
  • Ted Schaal – “Dropsy”
  • Stephen Shachtman – “A”

ON A ROLL

DROPSY

A

Sculpture at the River Market invited all artists participating in the 2017 Show & Sale to submit a proposal for its $60,000 Public Monument Competition. This is the seventh such competition in the ten years of the Show & Sale.

Of the 50 artists in the 2017 Show & Sale, 29 artists submitted a proposal.  The proposals of the seven semifinalists were displayed during the event’s Preview Party on the evening of April 21, and Preview Party guests voted for their 1st, 2nd and 3rd choice.  All votes were tallied and the top three finalists were announced at the end of the evening.

The top three proposals will be juried on April 22 and 23, and the 2017 winner will be announced at 3PM on Sunday, April 23.  The winner will be installed at the Southwest Community Center in 2018.

The other semifinalists were: Terry & Maritza Bean, Craig Campbell, Jane DeDecker, and Mark Leichliter.

Previous Public Monument Competition winners have been:

  • 2011 – Chapel for The Center installed in Riverfront Park
  • 2012 – Bryan Massey for Nautilus installed in Riverfront Park
  • 2013 – Ted Schaal for Open Window installed in Riverfront Park
  • 2014 – Lorri Acott for Peace installed at 2nd Street and Main Street
  • 2015 – Michael Warrick for Mockingbird Tree installed at Chenal Parkway and Chenal Valley Drive
  • 2016 – Clay Enoch for United which will be installed at Central High School in September 2017.

More information is available on the web at http://sculptureattherivermarket.com/.


Mark Leichliter’s OVERCOME to be installed today

Staff from the City of Little Rock Department of Parks and Recreation, in partnership with Deltic Timber and Sculpture at the River Market, will install Mark Leichtliter’s Overcome, a 16-foot-tall stainless steel sculpture on a four foot base in the median of Chenal Parkway near St. Vincent Way.

The piece was purchased by Sculpture at the River Market with assistance from Deltic Timber to be enjoyed by the public as they travel through the area.  Iconic public art can serve as a landmark for residents, employees, and visitors.

Overcome depicts nine forms held together by lattice. They rise up and out of this bond to soar free. Each form is an arrow pointing skyward in continued aspiration for the greater good.

The installation is expected to take most of the day.  Each of the nine forms will be bolted into place and then pivoted into position, then the lattice will be installed around the bottom enshrouding the lower sections of the nine forms.

Leichliter has several other pieces located in Little Rock.

 


Kevin Robb’s SERENADING THE CLOUDS to be installed today

Looking UpStaff from the City of Little Rock Department of Parks and Recreation, in partnership with Deltic Timber and Sculpture at the River Market, will install Kevin Robb’s Serenading the Clouds, a 19-foot-tall brushed stainless steel sculpture near the intersection of Rahling Road and St. Vincent Way.

The piece was purchased by Sculpture at the River Market with assistance from Deltic Timber to be enjoyed by the public as they travel through the area.  Iconic public art can serve as a landmark for residents, employees, and visitors.

Kevin Robb’s Serenading the Clouds is a unique design for him because it has an even number of components.  Four components take a special design to ensure the sculpture is strong and not repetitive, bringing the dynamics of space into the design that doesn’t come naturally.

The stainless steel is cut out and the individual components are welded together. When the components are 80% complete he then starts assembling them. The individual elements are hung from a crane system in his studio allowing them to turn, twist, raise, and move.  Once he is pleased with the direction of the components, they are marked, taken down, and cut into one another so they can be conjoined into a continuous piece.  It is never exact to the sketch, the sketch becomes the general idea, the creation happens in the studio.

Serenading the Clouds soars into the air at 19 feet and is 8 feet in width. It commands space and deals with the space around it with the strong, positive presence it displays. The brushed stainless steel finish catches the light in so many different ways.

Robb’s Playing Ball is located at the roundabout on Rebsamen Park Road at Riverfront Drive.


Arkansas Heritage Month – On Armed Forces Day visit the City of Little Rock’s MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History

MacPark ArsenalToday is Armed Forces Day.  It is a good day to visit Little Rock’s museum devoted to Arkansas’ military heritage.  Located in the historic Arsenal Tower in MacArthur Park, the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History honors the Arkansans who have served in the armed forces.  Exhibits feature artifacts, photographs, weapons, documents, uniforms and other military items that vividly portray Arkansas’s military history at home and abroad.

The exhibits include:

  • From Turbulence to Tranquility: The Little Rock Arsenal
  • Capital In Crisis and Celebration: Little Rock and the Civil War
  • Alger Cadet Gun
  • Camden Expedition
  • David Owen Dodd
  • Through the Camera’s Eye: The Allison Collection of World War II Photographs
  • By the President in the Name of Congress: Arkansas’ Medal of Honor Recipients
  • Conflict and Crisis: The MacArthur- Truman Controversy
  • Duty, Honor and Country: General Douglas MacArthur
  • The Sun Never Sets on the Mighty Jeep: The Jeep During World War II
  • War and Remembrance: The 1911 United Confederate Veterans Reunion
  • First Call – American Posters of World War I
  • Undaunted Courage, Proven Loyalty: Japanese American Soldiers in World War II
  • Vietnam, America’s Conflict

The MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History is a museum of the City of Little Rock.  It is led by executive director Stephan McAteer who works with the MacArthur Military History Museum Commission.  The museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 9am to 4pm, Saturday from 10am to 4pm and Sunday from 1pm to 4pm.


2 Comments

Art+History Throwback Thursday: City Park in 1907

On February 9, Little Rock voters will have the chance to say Yes to improving the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, Arkansas Arts Center, and MacArthur Park.

Leading up to that election is a good time to look back at the development of MacArthur Park.

The land now known as MacArthur Park had originally served as a horse racetrack in the early days of Little Rock.  By 1836, the federal government purchased the land for construction of a military arsenal.  The flagship building, the Arsenal Tower building, is the only remaining structure from that time period.  

The land served as a military outpost until 1892.  On April 23, 1892, a land swap took place where in the City of Little Rock was given the property with the stipulation that it would be “forever exclusively devoted to the uses and purposes of a public park.” (Never mind that the federal government took part of the land back for the construction of the Wilbur Mills Freeway.)  

In return for giving the City this land, the federal government took possession of land on the north side of the Arkansas River (then part of Little Rock) – that 1,000 acres became Fort Logan H. Roots. The park opened on July 4, 1893, with the name Arsenal Park. Since it was the City’s first and only park at the time, residents started referring to it as City Park. In time, the designation Arsenal Park fell from use.  In fact, it is referred to as City Park exclusively and officially in City documents throughout the first 42 years of the 20th Century. 

On March 9, 1942, Little Rock’s first public park was renamed by the Little Rock City Council.  By a vote of fourteen ayes, zero nays and four absent, the alderman approved Ordinance 6,388 which renamed the park in honor of General Douglas MacArthur. 

The text of the ordinance says that “it is fitting and proper that the bravery and glorious deeds of General Douglas MacArthur, a native son of Little Rock, should be commemorated.”  This was passed a few months after the United States’ entry into World War II.   Though he was already a well-established military figure, most of the MacArthur legend during the war would take place after this naming. 

In 1952, General MacArthur (contemplating a run for the GOP nomination for President) visited Little Rock in March.  Later that year, the eventual GOP nominee (and 34th US President) General Dwight Eisenhower visited the park.  The 1952 Democratic nominee Adlai Stevenson also visited MacArthur Park in 1952.

Today, MacArthur Park is the anchor of the burgeoning MacPark district as well as the MacArthur Park Historic Distric.

 


Tonight’s Movies at MacArthur is “4-4-43” about a daring escape from a POW camp

The MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History will host a screening of the documentary 4-4-43. The screening starts at 6:30pm tonight at the museum in MacArthur Park.

Free admission. Free popcorn and beverages provided.

On April 4, 1943, ten American prisoners-of-war and two Filipino convicts broke out of an escape-proof Imperial Japanese Army prison plantation in the Philippines. The secret that they carried out with them would shock the world. Called the “Greatest Story of the War in the Pacific” by the U.S. War Department in 1944, the full, uncensored true action adventure tale has been lost to history for nearly seven decades – until now.

The MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History is a program of the City of Little Rock’s Parks and Recreation Department.