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Contact: Laura Schley, Public Arts Coordinator: 920-448-3142
Matt Cullen, WPS Media Relations: 920-433-1554
A new permanent sculpture inspired by the Fox River and the long-standing commitment of Wisconsin Public Service (WPS) to Green Bay is now on display in the city’s downtown. Mayor Jim Schmitt, WPS Foundation President Kevin Fletcher, Public Arts Coordinator Laura Schley and artist Kent Hutchison helped to debut the sculpture, titled Embark, during an unveiling ceremony Wednesday, Dec.19, at the corner of Northland Avenue and Washington Street.
“Public art is one of those things that really adds to the quality of life for our community,” Schley said. “It makes our city unique.”
Embark was selected as the city’s newest work of art in response to a call for proposals by the Green Bay Public Arts Commission last December. After reviewing several submissions, the commissioners chose Embark for its interactive elements, symbolizing the connection between WPS and the city, and its ties to Green Bay’s history.
The 23-foot-tall sculpture was funded through a generous donation from the WPS Foundation. A portion of the donation also will be used to maintain the sculpture in the future.
“Each year, the WPS Foundation endeavors to provide arts and cultural experiences in the communities it serves,” Fletcher said. “Embark truly accomplishes this goal, and we hope it inspires others to use their energy to help Green Bay remain a vibrant, strong community.”
Embark was designed by Green Bay resident Kent Hutchison to look like abstract sails on a ship, and was finished earlier this month.
“Embark impacts the downtown landscape stronger than I expected. Specifically at dawn, the brushed aluminum sails really reflect the natural colors of the sun,” Hutchison said. “It’s kinetic performance is unpredictable, exciting and very engaging.”
Green Bay has several works of public art on display, including 13 new pieces that have been installed throughout 2018. Collaboration with local officials and business owners has allowed the Public Arts Commission to successfully expand access to public works of art throughout Green Bay. Embark is the latest of the 13 new pieces installed in the past year.
About Green Bay Public Arts Commission
The Green Bay Public Arts Commission is made up of community representatives, arts professionals and city staff. The group exists to fund artistic activities and support cultural programs that integrate and advance arts and culture as an essential part of life in Green Bay. To learn more, visit www.greenbaywi.gov/pac.
About Wisconsin Public Service Foundation
Wisconsin Public Service Foundation is funded by the shareholders of WEC Energy Group, not by the customers of its utility subsidiaries, and is in its 54th year.
Since its inception, the foundation has provided more than $34 million in contributions to programs that support work in the areas of arts and culture, community and neighborhood development, education, human services and health, and care for the environment. Learn more at www.wisconsinpublicservice.com/company/wpsfoundation.aspx.
WEC Energy Group (NYSE: WEC), based in Milwaukee, is one of the nation’s premier energy companies, serving 4.4 million customers in Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota. Visit wecenergygroup.com.