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Barth Avenue Bench
Barth Avenue Bench was created as a seating area for visitors using the Pleasant Run Trail. It was constructed from elements of the old Barth Avenue car bridge, which was removed and reconstructed in 2015 as a pedestrian-only bridge to allow more people to safely access both sides of the Pleasant Run waterway.
Indianapolis-based artist Brian McCutcheon designed the sculptural bench; it was fabricated by Indianapolis Fabrications (iFab). McCutcheon works in video, photography, and sculpture. He has been the recipient of a number of artist grants, awards, and residencies, including a 2010-11 Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant and a summer 2009 residency at Sculpture Space in Utica, New York. Since 2006, his work has been featured in a wide range of exhibitions on a national and international scale. More about the artist can be found at http://brianmccutcheon.com/
Improving the area around the Barth Avenue Bridge is a project of Reconnecting To Our Waterways, a collective impact initiative to enrich the livability of Indianapolis and the well-being of residents by generating new and sustainable opportunities to learn about and experience art, nature, and beauty along targeted natural waterways and the neighborhoods around them. More information about the project can be found here: http://reconnectingtoourwaterways.org/barth-avenue-bridge-project/
Great Blue Heron
Commissioned by Reconnecting to our Waterways–a collective impact project bringing attention to the city’s waterways as a cultural, community, and ecological resource–Great Blue Heron calls attention to the revitalized Spruce Bridge along Pleasant Run Creek. The sculpture is made of painted and shaped steel rod and represents a common Indiana water bird with a fish in its mouth. The artist was selected through a community-engaged process and the sculpture was designed after extensive consultation with neighborhood residents. It is his hope that the sculpture will bring many years of enjoyment, a sense of calm when viewed, and a dialogue around stream and river quality.
As a historic piece of the city’s past designed by legendary architect George Kessler in the early 1900s, Spruce Bridge was an instrumental part in Kessler’s vision of creating a series of greenspaces near Indianapolis’ natural waterways that would provide healthy recreation areas for the enjoyment of all. The neighboring community is currently engaged in a multi-pronged effort to bring Pleasant Run back to its former glory.
Patrick (Pat) Mack is an Indianapolis-based metal sculptor and photographer. A native of South Bend, Indiana and a graduate of the art program at IU Bloomington, he is inspired by the work of artists Jacob Epstein, Henry Moore, Alberto Giacometti, Auguste Rodin, and Frederick Hart. He says that the essential purpose and value of his work is to deepen our own sense of humanity through a balance of form and content, to evoke our dreams, deepen our spirituality, and give hope to darkness.
Life Flows Here
This mural, located on the border between the Christian Park and Twin Aire neighborhoods, enlivens what was previously a dark and littered stretch of English Avenue that also served as part of the Pleasant Run Greenway. It was an unpleasant and hazardous experience to drive or ride though. The Christian Park Neighborhood Association decided to beautify this underpass with the assistance of Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, and KIB selected the artist/designer Kristopher May to provide the design and lead the project.
Life Flows Here is a depiction of the community, environment, and atmosphere of the adjoining neighborhoods. As a uniting feature, the blue hues flow in a ribbon through both sides, symbolizing the importance of Pleasant Run Creek to both areas. Daylight colors adorn the background of the Christian Park (north) side, while dusk hues fill the background of the Twin Aire (south) side. The south side also showcases the view of the Indianapolis skyline as it would be seen looking west along English Avenue, towards Twin Aire. Activities important to both areas are depicted in the silhouettes, and iconic structures (such as the Christian Park Family Center and the Florence Fay School building in Twin Aire) are prominent on their respective sides.
Kristopher (Kris) May is a landscape architect, artist, and designer. He has worked with numerous non-profit and for-profit organizations on marketing, website, and identity design projects. He has also illustrated several children’s books, several of which were designed to help Indiana youth navigate the legal system. At the time he created this mural he was employed by a landscape design/urban design/urban planning firm on Indianapolis’ northeast side, and served as vice-president of the Indiana Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Kris is also an avid cyclist who raises money through the Tour de Trees for the TREE Fund, a national organization that promotes and advocates for science-based tree care and urban forestry. Kris lives with his husband and two children in the Fountain Square neighborhood, where he is an active community volunteer.
Prospect Falls Mosaic Column
The site of this sculpture, at the juncture of the WE-CAN, Norwood Place, and Twin Aire neighborhoods, is also in close proximity to the Community Justice Campus. The neighborhood felt that the location needed to express its identity as well as provide a spot of beauty. Planned to be the central element of a colorful butterfly garden at a rest stop on the Pleasant Run Trail, the design focus is on nature: the column has a side dedicated to the flowers that can be found in the garden at peak season, and a side visually drawing attention to its proximity to Pleasant Run Creek. The other two sides incorporate floral and butterfly tiles created by the community.
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