Council Greenlights Purchase Of ‘Solar Tree’ Sculpture For Installation In West Plaza Of Municipal Building

‘Solar Tree’ by Eric Thelander. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Arts in Public Places Board Chair Steve Foltyn and Senior Management Analyst  Libby Carlsten brief Council this evening on a proposal to purchase and install ‘Solar Tree’ by Eric Thelander. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Staff Report

Arts in Public Places Board Chair Steve Foltyn and Senior Management Analyst  Libby Carlsten briefed Council this evening on a proposal submitted by artist Eric Thelander in response to an “APPB Call for Art,” specifically for a sculpture to be installed at the Municipal Building.

Council voted 7-0 to purchase Thelander’s sculpture “Solar Tree” for installation in the west plaza of the Municipal Building. The purchase price of 123,600 includes design, materials, labor, solar system and all aspects of installation including base construction.

Thelander’s proposal is for an 18-foot-tall steel and aluminum sculpture in the form of a tree. The work is proposed to include solar panels on the upper leaves to power LED lighting plus USB ports and a WiFi repeater for use by the public. The installation also will include two picnic tables and a bench in the same style as the tree, and fabricated from the same materials.

The board received 18 proposals in August of 2014 and then engaged in a lengthy process to narrow the choices, including two major opportunities for public input. “Solar Tree” was the overwhelming favorite of both the public and board.

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