Art in the Outdoors Tour of Sculptures Brings Up Many Emotions

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Byline: Barbara Ferguson

Think of how dull life would be without art, how drab your home would be without color, or how boring the world would be without shapes and designs.

From early times, cities have known the value of art and the beneficial effect that it has on its citizens.

Think of ancient Rome or Greece without its sculptures. Renaissance Florence had its Michelangelo and modern Chicago has its Picasso.

I made an art pilgrimage the other day but I didn't travel to Chicago to visit a museum. I went to East Dundee, Carpentersville, West Dundee and Sleepy Hollow to see the outdoor public art exhibit titled "Sculpture under the Sky," which features four sculptures by local artists.

It was the idea of Claudia Kirmse, executive director of Artistic Bits Art Center and Gallery in East Dundee. It is sponsored by LaSalle Bank, Otto Engineering, Carpentersville Lions and the villages of East Dundee and West Dundee.

Claudia previously worked with the Barrington Arts Council and the local library there had a sculpture garden to show the works of local artists.

"I thought that it would be a good idea to have some outside projects in our area to promote arts in our community," she said.

"The villages were very receptive and thought that it would be a fun idea, and we have received a lot of positive feedback. The works are for sale after the exhibit is over."

The first sculpture I visited was titled "The Fountain of Youth." It is located by the bike path just south of the Depot in East Dundee and was created by Blair Motl of East Dundee. It is made of "found" objects.

Blair must have a keen sense of humor, which is evident when you stand by the two giant figures that are on either side of what resembles a bird bath.

The male has a surprised look and you can shake his knobby rusty hand. The female waves a friendly hello and has a smile despite what would appear to be a very bad hair day with her wiry locks springing out in all directions.

The Carpentersville village hall is the site of the second sculpture called "Winds of Change" by Arnold Kinast of Hampshire.

What is nice about art is it can be very subjective and involve the viewer. This calm piece resembles a white half moon edged with chrome held in place by six large bolts. …