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Downtown: Cary Visual Art Installs New Sculptures

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Jonathan Bowling’s piece, Giraffe, is lifted through the air.

Cary, NC — On Friday, July 17, 2015, Downtown Cary was filled with an unusual crowd of artists, cranes and pick-up trucks toting colorful sculptures of all shapes and sizes.

CVA Places 10 New Sculptures in Downtown Cary

As part of their eighth annual Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition, Cary Visual Art, or CVA, installed 10 new sculptures in Downtown Cary on Friday, July 17, 2015.

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Town officials and CVA members help artist Ray Katz place his sculpture in front of Cary Town Hall.

Preparing for the OSE is a long process that leads up to this important July day. On installation day, starting around 8 am, artists arrive in Downtown Cary with their sculptures in tow.

Since some artists come from other states, some pieces make quite the journey. Imagine driving down the highway and passing this pickup truck carrying a giraffe!

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Jonathan Bowling has installed art in Cary before.

Once the artists arrive in Cary with their sculptures, installation begins. Depending on the size, weight and dimensions of each sculpture, some require the help of a crane in order to be placed.

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Southern Crane is a big help to CVA on installation day.

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The crane is hooked on to the sculpture…

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…and it’s carried safely to its new home.

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A crane was needed to lift Hanna Jubran’s piece as well.

After the sculptures are on the ground, artists work to attach them to pre-placed bases. Some sculptures arrive in several pieces, so artists take a while to make sure their work is both attractive and secured well enough to withstand outdoor elements for the whole year.

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Artist Jeff Kiefer climbs up his sculpture to make sure it is perfect.

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Kiefer’s son, standing beside a miniature version of his Dad’s sculpture, watches him.

Cary artist Phil Hathcock puts the finishing touches on his sculpture, Windstone.

Cary artist Phil Hathcock puts the finishing touches on his sculpture, Windstone.

Opening Night

Placing all 10 sculptures in the hot July sun is always an exciting, yet tiring, event for the artists, CVA staff and volunteers and Town of Cary officials. At the end of the day, however, the hard work is celebrated with an OSE Opening Night Reception at the Cary Arts Center.

At this event, the public can mingle with the artists and fellow art lovers over wine and appetizers. During the reception, attendees are also able to enjoy a short presentation where each artists explains, in three minutes or less, the significance of their sculpture.

I heard a variety of speeches–some artists touched on art history, influence and styles while others simply told jokes or heartwarming stories about their inspiration.

After these speeches, the show’s juror, Clifford T. Chieffo, awarded one artist the Best in Show award. As this year’s juror, Chieffo, a Cary resident, also had the important job of selecting from a country-wide pool of applicants a small number of artists to install their works in Downtown Cary for one year. You can find out who won Best in Show, as well as more information about the artists, the sculptures and where to find them, online through Cary Visual Art.

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Story and photos by Jessica Patrick.

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Arts coverage on CaryCitizen is sponsored in part by Elegant Stitches in Waverly Place.

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