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Sculpture series being installed along Seawalk next week

September 20, 2017 – News

Juneau’s downtown waterfront will soon be transformed by new art. Aquileans is a series of sculptures by California-based artist Cliff Garten. Ten stainless steel sculptures will be set on top of existing bollards (formally used to tie up cruise ships) that line the edge of Seawalk from Marine Park to the Mt. Robert’s Tramway building. Installation is set to begin Sept. 27 and be complete by the end of the week.

According to the artist description, the origins of the sculptures are found in archetypes of the Alaskan landscape: “The form is a combination of two iconic ecological Alaskan shapes – a whale fluke and an eagle’s wings in flight. Set against the landscape of mountains and ocean, the sculptures will create a recognizable character for the waterfront and bring a contemporary aesthetic to the social and economic life of Juneau.”

Once installed, the sculptures will stand about 20 feet tall. They’ll reflect and refract sunlight during the day and will be illuminated with a program of color-changing LED lights at night.

Garten’s artwork is displayed in public spaces all over the United States, as well as abroad. One of his works, Ethereal Bodies 8 in San Francisco, was recently recognized by Americans for the Arts as being one of the best public art projects of 2017.

Aquileans is part of the City and Borough of Juneau’s cruise ship berths project. The sculpture series was funded through CBJ’s 1% for Art program, which requires one percent of the project construction cost be devoted to art for the facility. The art selection process started in 2014 and continued into 2015. A panel recommended Garten’s proposal after reviewing 28 submittals. The recommendation went through the Docks & Harbors Board and received final approval from the Juneau Assembly in spring 2015.

For more information, contact CBJ Port Engineer Gary Gillette at 586-0398 or gary.gillette@juneau.org.