Light Pole Sculptures
Artists: Vicki Wilson & John Larsen
Dedicated on September 13, 2014
PROJECT DESCRIPTION / SCOPE OF WORK
The Clackamas County Arts Alliance in partnership with the City of Oregon City and Main Street Oregon City commissioned Vicki Wilson and John Larsen to create site-specific art for Historic Downtown Oregon City. The main goal of the project is to create a series of unique aerial sculptures highlighting a gateway entrance and marking a pathway into and through Historic Downtown Oregon City. The series of sculptures are attached to existing light poles and were designed to enhance the streetscape, be welcoming, and signal people (using all modes of transportation) that they have arrived at a special destination.
THE SITE AND PROJECT BACKGROUND
Main Street Oregon City (MSOC) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit following the National Trust’s “Main Street” approach to community renewal. As the stakeholder-steward of Downtown Oregon City, Main Street’s mission is to work together as facilitators, coordinators, and be a catalyst to building partnerships that create a unique sense of place, preserve cultural landmarks, celebrate identity and stimulate economic vitality while supporting Downtown Oregon City’s role as a regional center for more than 400,000 county residents.
MSOC was created in 2008 to revitalize the 166 year-old downtown in the first city west of the Rocky Mountains. Oregon City has the distinction of being the “End of the Oregon Trail” as well as the first federally recognized city on the West Coast. Even the City of San Francisco had to register with the Territorial Capital in downtown Oregon City for official legal status. Located 30 miles southeast of Portland in the north Willamette Valley, Oregon City’s downtown is the birthplace of the Pacific Northwest as we know it today.
The collaborative efforts to revitalize this community focuses on building partnerships with a range of arts, cultural, public and private sector partners to revitalize this waterfront downtown at the base of the Willamette Falls (largest falls west of the Mississippi and second only to Niagara Falls in volume). MSOC programming has been focused on place-making through cultural enhancement of the community.
It is the hope of the Committee that this gateway project will be the seed project to a larger gateway installation in the future. In recent years, the City has installed several works of Public Art and most recently launched Illuminate Oregon City – a one-year video projection on the exterior of the Oregon City Municipal Elevator.
Art Selection Steering Committee
- Nick Dierckman – Local Resident, Community Volunteer
- Jae Heidenreich – Tourism Development Lead, Clackamas County Tourism & Cultural Affairs
- Bunny Lewis – Artist, Local Resident
- Blane Meier – Business Owner
- Don Slack – Business Owner
- Cheryl Snow, Executive Director, Clackamas County Arts Alliance
- Jonathan Stone – Director, Main Street Oregon City
- Erik Wahrgren – Project Engineer, City of Oregon City
Project funding provided by:
Metro Enhancement Grant – City of Oregon City
Public Art Project Manager:
Elizabeth Klein, Clackamas County Arts Alliance