By Edwin Oscar Gutierrez, Jr.
Olympia plans to set up art installations in six other locations around the city.
Olympia’s Community Habitability and Public Safety Committee met yesterday February 23 to discuss plans to make Martin Way/Pacific Avenue SE, Harrison Avenue/Division Street NW, Capitol Boulevard SE, Deschutes Parkway , Eskridge/Henderson and East Bay Drive possible sites for artwork.
With an expected budget of around $50,000 to $100,000 for each site, the project, dubbed “Olympia Crossings”, aims to “place public art deep within the neighborhoods of Olympia” by erecting landscapes centered on the sculpture on the selected locations in five to six years.
Part of the Olympia Crossing project includes West Bay Drive and Eastside Street SE, which already have art installations.
West Bay Drive features two sculptures, depicting Water People and Tree People, on both sides of the bridge, titled “Unity” and created by Squaxin Island Tribe artist Andrea Wilbur-Sigo. West Bay has stainless steel and tempered glass constructions in the shape of a heron and a fish facing each other, made by Lin McJunkin and Milo White and named “Guardians: Fighter and Watcher”.
“Olympia loves art,” explained the art plan attached to the meeting agenda. “From the murals on the walls of the city center to the plinths for spinning art near the waterfront, to the thriving music and theater scene and the exuberant creative spirit of its art walks and parades, the art is infused into the city.”
Other artists who will be involved in the project have not yet been identified, but the plan mentions that local artists will be included, but not exclusively make up the entire talent pool.
“The recommendation is to favor artists with a connection to Olympia without restriction as to place of residence,” the plan explains. “It would allow artists to be hired in the sister cities of Olympia.”
Each site should have a unique look reflecting the surrounding communities and neighborhoods, with lighting fixtures installed to make them visible at night.
“Solar or wind-powered lighting is encouraged,” the document says.
More information about Olympia Crossings is available here.