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(Posted 11:30 p.m., July 25)
Local artist to create Shenkman Arts Centre sculpture
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

A sculpture of a life-sized piano made of hammered bronze and stainless steel and a piano bench, half-chiseled out of a limestone boulder, will adorn the Shenkman Arts Centre Plaza when it opens next spring. File photo


An Ottawa-area sculptor has beat out three other artists for the right to create the focal piece which will adorn the Shenkman Arts Centre Plaza when it opens next spring.

Twenty-nine-year-old Maskull Lasserre’s submission consists of a life-sized, upright piano made out of hammered bronze and stainless steel, and a piano bench, partially chiseled out of a limestone boulder quarried from the construction site. The piano and boulder will rest on a concrete pad in the shape of a stage. Carving tools will also be on the stage, as if the sculpture is a work in progress.

According to Lasserre, the partially carved bench will encourage patrons to “participate in the work as a site of material meditation, or as a permanent prop in an outdoor performance.”

The two-stage competition for a public art installation at the Shenkman Arts Centre Plaza included such selection criteria as artistic excellence, experience, site integration, reflection of the community and sustainability.

The four finalists included Karl Ciesluk, Jennifer Macklem, Jean-Yves Vigneau and Lasserre who is currently teaching sculpture at Concordia University in Montreal.

Members of the public were given the opportunity to comment on models created by the four finalists which were on display for several days at Place d’Orléans. The art selection committee took the comments into consideration when selecting the eventual winner.

One of the things that made Lasserre’s submission so appealing was the marriage of the performing arts, symbolized by the piano, and the visual arts. Both of which symbolize the activities which will be going on inside the arts centre.

Lasserre will be paid $65,000 for his sculpture which will adorn the 1300 square metre plaza fronting Centrum Blvd. and acting as a gateway to the building’s glass facade.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

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