Sculpture in Lafayette

Published on: October 26th, 2015

A sculpture in Lafayette called “Strollers” is to be dedicated to the memory of Lafayette arts champion Jean Mellblom.

According to a press release, “Strollers, a 6’ bronze sculpture by artist Pat Kennedy ,was installed at 400 E. Simpson Street as a permanent tribute to Jean Mellblom. Jean Mellblom passed away in January of 2013; with the help of the Jean Mellblom Memorial fund, Jean’s family has purchased a sculpture, to be installed in Old Town Lafayette, as a way to honor her memory.”

“The sculpture will be dedicated in a public ceremony on Saturday, October 31 at 11 am. The event, in the garden at 400 E. Simpson, will include live music, and a presentation by family members and Mayor Christine Berg. The public is invited to join this free event honoring one of Lafayette’s Arts Heroes.”

“This sculpture acknowledges that one of Jean Mellblom’s enduring legacies is the role she played in establishing Lafayette’s public art program. Jean Mellblom lived in Lafayette for nearly 10 years in the 1990s. She brought the concept of publicly funded art to town. Jean was a persistent, feisty, and very friendly person –all of which helped her convince City officials that public art was necessary in Lafayette.”

“Jean started her campaign at the same time the new library building was being designed. She saw a large, eventually windowless wall on Baseline Rd. as a potential canvas. After developing an idea for the mural with a local artist, she spent several years raising funds for the project. She asked for donations, convinced city council to contribute matching money, and organized a program of selling mural tiles to donors.”

“The mural happened, and Jean raised so much enthusiasm for outside art that city council approved a public art fee on new developments. Many people have been involved since then, but it all started with Jean and a vision she had for Lafayette. Because of her dedication and vision, the people’s choice award for Art on the Street is named the “Jean Mellblom” Award.”

On a separate not but in the same city, Lafayette is calling for Art on the Street 2016 sculpture artists.

“Artists’ submissions are due December 1, 2015. This program provides artists nationwide the opportunity to showcase their work in this creative, diverse and eclectic community.”

“Art on the Street, in its eighth year, is the largest sculpture on loan program in Boulder County. Selected sculptures will be on display outdoors for one year. 16-18 works will be selected; artists will each receive a $500 stipend upon installation. All sculptures are for sale in this outdoor art display. Artworks on display are eligible for the $1000 Jean Mellblom People’s Choice Award or the $250 People’s Choice Award. More information about the program can be found at cityoflafayette.com/CFA.”

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