Heights Boulevard Sculpture Project
March 31, 2014 - November 4, 2014
We all know the Houston Heights has long been recognized as a community that supports the arts and is home to many of the top artists in the country. That distinction is about to get even better.
Gus Kopriva, owner of Redbud Gallery on 11th. Street and a true icon in the local, national and international art scene, has long dreamed of producing large- scale public art exhibitions in Houston. He thus embarked on a plan to expand the placement of public art pieces to numerous locations throughout the city and particularly along the esplanade of Heights Boulevard. The esplanade, a declared Scenic Right of Way from White Oak Bayou to 20th Street, has long enjoyed a revitalization and beautification plan by the HHA with native treescapes, flower gardens (with comprehensive irrigation systems for their long-term success), drinking fountains, jogging trails, benches and gazebos. Lucky for the Houston Heights, and thanks to Gus’s efforts, we have been approved by the City’s Parks Department and Public Works as a major location for a public art exhibit as well.
A year of planning and a Mayor’s Initiative Grant through Houston Arts Alliance along with private donations has made this project possible. Gus Kopriva joined forces with Chris Silkwood, a local artist and community activist as well as other community leaders including Jim Bennett, Simon Eyles, Dave Steitz, Catherine Anspon, Minnette Boesel, cultural liaison to the Mayor’s office and Joe Turner, Executive Director of the Parks Department to carefully orchestrate a plan.
The goal of the “True North” sculpture project is to organize an exhibition that is a representation of local works of contemporary art along the esplanade for the enjoyment of our community and visitors. Exhibits—produced by highly recognized Texas artists—will foster the understanding and advancement of art.
The first True North sculpture project will remain for a period of nine months, and participating artists will be Carter Ernst, Dan Havel, Paul Kittelson, Lee Littlefield, Patrick Medrano, Steve Murphy, Dean Ruck, and Ed Wilson. You can search the internet for any one of these artists to learn more about their careers and extensive bodies of work.
We’d also like to acknowledge our involved non-profit arts organizations, Fresh Arts and Rubber.
The sculptures will be installed the end of March and remain through November 2014. Citizens and visitors to the Heights will enjoy these sculptures from 4th. Street to 18th. Street of Heights Boulevard. Don’t be surprised if traffic slows down just a bit as people take notice of these fun, whimsical and innovative works of art.