Tiburon endorses outdoor art installation

Tiburon is planning a colorful art installation to adorn the South Knoll this spring and summer.

The city council unanimously approved a project proposal made by Heritage and Arts Commission Vice Chairman Arjun Gupta during a meeting on October 19.

Artist Thomas Jackson’s installation consists of colorful, lightweight pieces of durable fabric that are attached to 5-foot poles driven into the ground. The glittering, multicolored installation will run for eight and a half weeks from May to July and has an estimated project cost of $14,700, which the developers plan to raise through private fundraising.

Gupta, who has been on the commission since January, said he led efforts to develop the project proposal.

“The installation focuses on the interplay of our local landscape and natural forces and evokes our relationship to nature, time and change,” Gupta said. “As a Northern California community, we are especially sensitive to climate change and the dangers and opportunities it brings.”

The installation will be bustling –– floating with the prevailing coastal winds along Richardson Bay. Installation is for viewing only.

Gupta said the piece would be positioned on a non-irrigated part of the park. The installation’s dichotomy would be a reminder of renewable energy and growth for the community, he said.

“The idea of ​​these beautiful, colorful, changing pieces of fabric set against this otherwise barren and slightly impoverished dry landscape is exciting,” he said. “That message is what I really like about this project too.”

The installation is considered the first in a series of projects developed by the City’s Heritage and Arts Commission and Public Art Selection Committee. It was conceived as a larger program to bring contemporary art to Tiburon. They hope to bring in a new installation or exhibition each year to further establish the city as a cultural and artistic destination.

Council member Holli Thier called the installation “an amazing piece of outdoor art that everyone will enjoy.” She called the design “beautiful, amazing and different”.

“I’m especially thrilled that the artist is also a photographer so the public can forever see the art he creates,” she said. “I think people might have questions if they don’t know what it is, but I think the community will like it. Even Mill Valley and Strawberry will see it from the other side and enjoy it.

Gupta called the fundraising plan “pretty traditional.”

On Tuesday evening, the Heritage and Arts Commission considered various fundraising opportunities. The group plans to solicit major donations and also engage in a campaign to support the general public. They are planning offers such as enamel pins designed by artist Scott Froschauer emblazoned with the word “St-Art” or raffles of Jackson’s artwork.

The proposal was presented to the Heritage and Arts Commission in June 2021 and approved unanimously. The project was modified and again approved on September 1 by the commission.

On September 20, the proposal was presented to the Parks, Open Spaces and Trails Commission, which supported the project.

Jackson is an artist originally from Philadelphia but known in the Bolinas art scene.

“The main goal for myself and for people who look at my work is to see landscapes in a new way,” he said. “I will hopefully give them a new perspective on this landscape.”

His work, including photography, has been exhibited in New York, at the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe and at the Bolinas Museum.

About Irene J. O'Donnell

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