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News Release: Krasl Art Center: Providing Public Art to St. Joseph for over 25 years

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August 06, 2019
Monday, August 5, 2019, St. Joseph, Mich. - Krasl Art Center is honored to announce a matching gift of up to $83,000 from an anonymous donor. This pledge is intended to help Krasl Art Center finalize fundraising for Sculpting Community project by inspiring new donors to contribute toward the project’s cost. Each and every dollar given to the campaign until the project is fully funded will be matched by a second dollar thanks to this generous commitment. The challenge has already inspired $25,469.25 in new gifts.
 
Sculpting Community project, which transformed Krasl Art Center’s grounds into the compelling space you’ve enjoyed through the summer, was a $1.8M investment. More than 400 corporations; local, state and federal grants; and individuals have provided financial support to this project. The balance needed for a fully funded project is $115,061.50. Thanks to the matching gift this leaves a goal of $57,530.75 in new gifts. Gifts may be made at KAC (open 7 days a week), at krasl.org or to Krasl Art Center through Berrien Community Foundation (berriencommunity.org).
 
Thanks to Sculpting Community project, Krasl Art Center’s grounds are better able to showcase sculpture installation and interactive artwork making public art fun, accessible and engaging while remaining free and open to all. The signature work is the monumental and permanent sculpture, Rising Crossing Tides, created specifically for the site by world-renowned artist, Richard Hunt. 
 
This summer KAC welcomed five temporary sculptures on their grounds that are each engaging, thought-provoking, and always on view. Play with the PVC musical tubes in Peter Krsko’s Ground Wave; marvel at the lifelike bronze Overseer by Dora Natella; contemplate renewable energy with Sam Albaugh’s, Wind Powered Machine Self Preservation; and allow Chris Knight’s The Floral Dozen, This Die is Twenty, and In Spired to illuminate your late-night walks around KAC’s Sculpting Community. These dynamic public art pieces would not be possible without the support of community members like you.
 
Peter Krsko's Ground Wave is a site-specific installation in KAC's East Garden, dedicated in memory of Maria G. "Lupe" Hopp. Krsko worked daily for a week to construct the frames and add the layers of lath that create this tri-part sculpture. He salvages unwanted lumber to use for these projects he calls "Arboria." By shaping the lath around the frames, he returns the prefabricated material to the organic, tree-like forms from which they were originally milled. People of all ages enjoy playing this musical sculpture.
 
Dora Natella's Overseer towers 13 feet above the ground. Although the figure standing atop the tree trunk might appear to be sculpted from stone or clay, it is actually cast bronze! Below, pieces of aluminum cast from a real tree trunk were welded together to create the column on which the figure stands. Natella currently serves on the faculty at the Ernestine M. Raclin School of the Arts, Indiana University, South Bend.
 
Chris Knight's series of three geometric sculptures are solar-powered. At night, the sculptures illuminate, casting patterns of light across their surroundings. Knight carves the intricate designs with an electric saw out of the same light but durable material used for commercial signs. Knight is a Chicago-based artist who makes three-dimensional sculptures and signs, often out of reclaimed wood.
 
When Sam Albaugh's wind-powered sculpture is pulled along in the wagon (which the artist often does in his own neighborhood), it actually generates electricity, but where does the electricity go? The energy that the turbine creates is wired back into the supporting steel frame, which sustains the electrical current so that no energy is lost from the sculpture. The relationship between the turbine and its supporting structure – including the whimsical Radio Flyer wagon – is both practical and metaphorical. 
 
The installations by Natella, Knight and Albaugh are underwritten by The John DeVries Insurance Agency and will be on view through Spring of 2020. 
 
Peter Krsko’s installation is underwritten by Horizon Bank and will remain on view through September 2019. Krsko will be in attendance for the August 9, 6-8 pm opening celebration of the KAC’s next indoor exhibition.  
 
Learn more about all the KAC’s public sculpture works at https://krasl.org/art/sculpture-map/
 
The public is invited to celebrate the completion of this significant community initiative during a free to all Avent-Garde(n) Party on Sunday, September 8, 2-5 pm.



Richard Hunt's Rising Crossing Tides, Peter Krsko's Ground Wave, Dora Natella's Overseer, Sam Albaugh’s Wind Powered Machine Self Preservation, Chris Knight’s The Floral Dozen, This Die is Twenty, and In Spired.