[wonderplugin_gallery id=”16″]


AMES, Iowa — The City of Marion will host a celebration unveiling two new large-scale sculptures — “Disappearing Culture” by J. Aaron Alderman and “Prairie Revival” by Reinaldo Correa — at Lowe Park from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, with a ribbon-cutting at 1:30 p.m.

Correa, a lecturer in architecture at Iowa State University, won a competition sponsored by the Marion Arts Council to create a focal entry point to the 188-acre park off North 10th Street in Marion. He designed “Prairie Revival” as “a metaphor for beauty, change, new beginnings, endurance and revival,” he said. (Read more about it in the news release from June 2017.)

The sculpture’s scale and complexity presented challenges that delayed the installation by a couple of months.

“When dealing with artwork of this scale, it takes a lot of heavy equipment to handle the piece. Due to the spiral nature of the work, for feasibility purposes, we also built it on its side, which added another level of complexity,” Correa said.

“Because the design had compound curves and several changes in the spiral radii — which meant making the steel bend in two completely different directions while also twisting it — the fabrication process was more complex. We were dealing with very tight tolerances in relationship to the minimal footing design. Finally, when it came to painting the artwork, there was a very varied color palette, which meant a lot of time spent isolating and taping effectively the transition from one color to the other,” he said.

Taking extra time and care ensured the final sculpture “truly embodied the vision and craftsmanship we had shared with the city, the arts council and the community of Marion,” Correa said. “The communication and the relationship with each of these groups throughout this process was amazing. I believe the artwork evolved into a better solution because of these factors.”

The dedication of both sculptures will take place in the Oaks Room of the Lowe Park Arts and Environment Center, 4500 N. 10th St., Marion, and will include presentations by Correa and Alderman. The event is free and open to the public.