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COMMERCE CITY — Commerce City dedicated “Determination” on Saturday, March 29, at Fairfax Park, the first installation conceived via the city’s new public art master plan that was adopted in April 2013.
Costing $33,000, “Determination” consists of three groupings of aluminum sculptures representing baseball, futsal and basketball players.
“It was the determination of the Commerce City Cultural Council that led to the adoption of the city’s first public art plan in 2013, so the name of this piece is fitting,” said Mayor Pro Tem René Bullock. “The plan is a real step to meeting our vision of a Quality Community for a Lifetime, creating a thoughtful approach to enhance our community for years to come.”
Funding was made available through the Fairfax Park renovation capital improvement project. Artist Joshua Wiener was selected through a competitive process, with materials coming from local company Ryerson.
“The design inspiration was the community-driven futsal courts. The piece is really about the convergence and energy surrounding sports,” said Wiener. “The city’s commitment to creating avenues for play and supporting cultural is admirable. I’m so pleased to be a part of it.”
Wiener was born into a stone sculpting community and makes large scale public and private sculptures. An instructor at the Art Students League in Denver, he has taught workshops at the Denver Art Museum and The Colorado Academy. Joshua was the 2006 recipient of the Mayor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts and the 2011 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award. His public sculptures can be found in Durango, Wheat Ridge, Castle Rock and Denver as well as Florida, Washington and Oregon.
The Commerce City Cultural Council began the process to create a public art master plan for the city in 2011. The council-appointed commission surveyed existing city facilities, inventoried established installations and identified options for expanding the city’s collection. Completed in 2013, the plan also provided the process for selecting Determination, creating a selection committee comprised of residents, residents, Cultural Council members, city staff, a landscape architect, a business representative, and a visual artist representative. The committee used a request for qualifications process and received eight applications in August 2013. Three finalists were selected; the committee unanimously selected Wiener for the commission. The Cultural Council and City Council reviewed the recommendation and approved the installation in late 2013.
“So many people helped make this a reality and the result is a strong work of art for Commerce City,” said Maura O’Neal, selection committee and Cultural Council member. “We look forward to many more partnerships with the city to promote art and culture.”