Friday, February 28, 2014

They're blowing up a Calder in Fort Worth!


I love this...

For 30 years "The Eagle", a 39 ft. tall sculpture by Alexander Calder, was arguably Fort Worth's most iconic piece of art - commissioned in 1972 to stand guard in front of the new Fort Worth National Bank.

Unfortunately, the Eagle was not "public art"...it was owned by the bank, which was later purchased by Bank One, who then later sold the building and sculpture to a real estate investment company named Loutex, which in turn sold the sculpture to another mysterious group of investors who "tried" to find a buyer who would keep it in Fort Worth but failed, and the result (although the details are unclear) was that the Eagle was snatched from its perch and moved to Philadelphia where it sat at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for a time...hoping to find a new home in the Calder Museum (which was never built), and then ultimately sold to the city of Seattle where it finally came to rest as a prominent feature of the city's new Olympic Sculpture Garden.

To this day the residents of Fort Worth are hurt and dismayed by the loss of their beloved Calder.

But a group of art lovers and artists have decided to take action. 

A collective known as "Homecoming!" has created a blow-up version of the Calder Eagle and for one week it has been appearing in random locations through-out the city - to the delight of its citizens who are dutifully posting images of the floppy red inflatable to their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram feeds.  The event is called "The Eagle Has Landed"and began on February 23rd.

It's a bittersweet reminder of the sculpture that the city lost - a controversy which resulted in the establishment of the city's current-day public art program which, ironically, played a major role in bringing this project to fruition.

I think this is such a brilliant idea, a perfect blend of art, fun, satire and policatial commentary all wrapped up in a perfect inflatable package.  I wonder how Alexander Calder would have felt about it?

I hope that someday the city of Fort Worth finds a suitable replacment for their Eagle - they sure deserve it.

Fort Worth's Eagle - back in the glory days

Sightings around Fort Worth this week








 

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