Sculpture unveiling highlights exhibit

Penticton’s unofficial temporary walk of art was showcased Saturday with the unveiling of the six public sculpture exhibits.

Five of the artists responsible for the works were on hand for the celebration of the sculptures, four of which are on the Okanagan Lake front and the other two at City Hall and the roundabout near the Penticton Art Gallery.

“I think it’s wonderful the city is getting more involved in art and a sense of involvement in the community, I think it’s actually a vital part of the community,” said Summerland’s Michael Hermesh who created the piece Hat Box Man. “People who see the sculptures become a part of the art by interacting with it.”

Okanagan Falls artist Patrick Field provided The Portal.

“I think it’s great that Penticton’s made an effort to invest in some beauty in the community and I just hope we can continue this as an annual event and grow it,” he said. “I think you’ll find today and tomorrow and next week that people are going to come by and say ‘yeah we like that to be part of our community.’”

He described his work as: “My interpretation as an artist of the portal I see us entering and arriving as a harmonious wave of humility and respect for each other and nature.”

Robin Robertson who chaired the public sculpture committee was pleased to finally see the project become a reality.

“A lot of logistical things were involved, it was a matter of that (public artwork) being seen as valuable again,” she said. “Once we had the money it was work but it was wonderful work.

“It says that we’re becoming a city that realizes how important our cultural fabric is.”

The sculptures will stay in place for a year.

The other sculptures include Penticton First Nations artist Clint George’s piece Bringing Back the Salmon Chief, The Kiss by Serge Mozhnevsky of Coquitlam, Tamarack Pond by Paul Reimer of Cranbrook and 30 Birds by Zohreh Vahidifard, Tehran, Iran.