New Public Artwork By Warren Holzman Welcomes Public To The Discovery Center In Fairmount Park
The Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy's Percent for Art Program (OACCE), Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, and the East Park Leadership and Conservation Center are excited to announce the installation of The Discovery Center Gates, a new site-specific public artwork by Philadelphia-based artist blacksmith Warren Holzman.
The Discovery Center is a groundbreaking venture by two Philadelphia organizations: Philadelphia Outward Bound School and the Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Audubon Society. Together they will reach more than 15,000 students per year through Audubon's programs for 6 to 12 year-olds and Outward Bound's programs for 12 to 18 year-olds. The Discovery Center will protect a unique habitat rarely found in major urban areas and will provide education and adventure programs that inspire self-discovery, foster personal achievement, and build community across Philadelphia.
The Discovery Center Gates are a set of decorative steel gates that will welcome the public to The Discovery Center. The artwork consists of forged and fabricated weathering steel gates, visually comprised of a single repeating motif that alludes to common forms found in the adjacent Strawberry Mansion Reservoir, varying from native plants to resident and migratory bird species.
Mr. Holzman states, "The interlocking forms inspired by the reservoir transform singular units into a greater whole. This is a purposeful parallel to the collective effort of the organizations - the Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Audubon Society, the Philadelphia Outward Bound School, and the City of Philadelphia - that worked to establish The Discovery Center."
Holzman plans to install The Discovery Center Gates from Monday, September 17 to Wednesday, September 19. The press is invited to attend and cover the installation process on Wednesday, September 19 between 3:00-4:00 p.m. This installation will precede The Discovery Center's official ribbon cutting on Friday, September 28 and a community Discovery Day celebration on Saturday, September 29.
Preview of Holzman's The Discovery Gates; Courtesy of the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy. About the Artist
Warren Holzman is a Philadelphia-based artist blacksmith. He has designed and created many noteworthy commercial and public works both locally and around the globe. A master craftsman with a passion for education, Holzman teaches metal forging at Bryn Athyn College - where he has also executed an array of historically sympathetic new metalwork for Glencairn Museum and Bryn Athyn Cathedral.
This Percent for Art opportunity was nationally announced as an open call to artists and artist teams in June 2016. Five finalists were selected to present proposals from a pool of 85 applicants. The selection panel consisted of: Syd Carpenter, Artist and Professor, Swarthmore College; Winifred Lutz, Artist and Professor, Tyler School of Art; and Annette Monnier, Artist and Executive Director, University Arts League. The Advisory Panel consisted of representatives from: the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy, the East Park Leadership and Conservation Center, Audubon PA, Philadelphia Outward Bound School, Strawberry Mansion CDC, Digsau Architects, and a conservator from the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The selection panel unanimously selected Mr. Holzman's proposal.
About the Percent for Art Program
Enacted in 1959, the Percent for Art ordinance requires that one percent of the total dollar amount of any construction project that includes City funds be devoted to the commissioning of site-specific public art. The first of its kind in the nation, the program has commissioned over 300 works of art. The intent of the Percent for Art Ordinance is to enhance the City's public environment by incorporating exceptional site-specific works of art.
About City of Philadelphia's Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy
The Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy's (OACCE) mission is to support and promote arts, culture, and the creative industries; and to develop partnerships and coordinate efforts that weave arts, culture, and creativity into the economic and social fabric of the city of Philadelphia.
The OACCE manages and oversees City arts programs, provides services to artists and arts organizations and serves as the primary point of municipal contact for local organizations, businesses, artists and creative entrepreneurs. As Philadelphia's local arts agency, the OACCE works in cooperation with the Mayor, City Council, and other municipal offices to make Philadelphia a great place to live, work and visit.