Rotary art in parks to beautify landscape Four metal sculptures created by artist Tom Newport as part of a project costing $10,000 which includes landscaping will be installed at four parks to mark Public Art Appreciation Day.

This sculpture by Cedar Rapids artist Tom Newport is being installed at Noelridge Park by the Dowtown Rotary Club as part of Public Art Appreciation Day on September 30. Photo: Submitted
This metal sculpture will be installed at Noelridge Park by the Rotary club on September 30.

On Saturday, volunteers will descend upon four Cedar Rapids parks — one in each quadrant of the city — to install public art projects.

On Public Art Appreciation Day, from 8.30 to 11.30 am — the Downtown Cedar Rapids Rotary Club (Iowa, US — D 5970) will install sculptures in Bever, Cherry Hill, Jones and Noelridge parks.

The four metal sculptures were created by Cedar Rapids artist Tom Newport. The $10,000 project includes landscaping around each sculpture.

Project Manager Barbara Green said Rotary members chose the project because it allows them to install artwork across the entire city.

“It’s such a wonderful project for Rotarians because being in Downtown Rotary, we do have members from all four corners of the city,” Green said.

“We thought this was a good, communitywide project.”

Green said all four sculptures are unique, yet similar in their design.

Newport, of Tom Newport Design, is a 1977 graduate of Cornell College.

He has more than 30 years of experience as a sculptor, jeweller and metal-smith.

According to a news release, Downtown Rotary Club members identified the need for public art in several high-traffic parks in the community.

In addition to sculptures, each art piece will be accompanied by landscaping and a rock marker with the name of the artist.

The city of Cedar Rapids has provided the land, foundation, base and marker and will handle future maintenance of the art pieces.

“Public art brings value to a city by creating a sense of identity for the city as a whole and also specifically for neighbourhoods,” Bill Stamats, chairman with the Cedar Rapids Visual Arts Commission, said in a release.

Further, he said public art can create a visual distinction for a city while also being a key factor in the cultural scene of that city.

The cultural scene, in turn, makes the city more dynamic for its denizens and aids in attracting businesses and tourism dollars, said Bill Stamats, chairman with the Cedar Rapids Visual Arts Commission.

Source: The Gazette

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