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Tag Archive | "sculpture"

Everything’s coming up flowers

This metal sculpture was made by Chris Powell.

Have you noticed some larger than life flowers around the area? 

There is one on the front lawn at the Cedar Springs  Post and a few more at the Cedar Springs Brewing Company. All turned up mysteriously on Mother’s Day.

According to Brynadette Powell, they are the craft of her father, Chris Powell, of Cedar Springs. “My dad started getting bored with retirement. He picked up a plasma cutter and has been making these beautiful flowers and other pieces,” she explained.

She said that her dad picks up various forms of scrap and recycles the material into the works of art. For instance, the flower at the Post was made from an old propane tank. She said he has made other types of pieces, including a sunfish, windchimes, a lightning rod, etc. 

She said many are on display at Pro Auto Works on Northland Drive. All of his sculptures are for sale. If anyone is interested in one of them, call Carl Straub at Pro Auto Works at 696-8863.

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New sculpture set in city park

By Sue Wolfe

Steve Anderson and his new sculpture of a blue heron.  Courtesy photo. 

A beautiful new sculpture has landed in the Heart of Cedar Springs and the artist who created it will be familiar to many.

“Love what you do and you will never work a day in your life” is local artist Steve Anderson’s motto as he celebrates 44 years of living by and through his “God-given gift” of sculpting. Anderson’s stainless-steel sculpture of a blue heron, standing nine feet tall with a six foot wing span and titled “Ascension,” was recently set in place in the northwest area within the Heart of Cedar Springs park along Cedar Creek between the new community library and amphitheater.  This is the second piece of Anderson’s abstract, nature-based work in the park. It joins his earlier piece titled “Dragons Flight” featuring three dragonflies in motion. Both sculptures are done using the 316L alloy that has superior anti-rust qualities and beautifully retains its shine.

Anonymous community philanthropists and lovers of art commissioned both pieces. They said their dream is for our community to have its own sculpture park where people of all ages could enjoy the outdoors while appreciating their interaction with the sculptures. Hopefully, some will be inspired to a higher level of artistic appreciation and new possibilities.

Local artist Alice Powell-Anderson, (not related to Steve Anderson) was one present for the recent dedication of the sculptures. “Both of Anderson’s pieces fit very well along the pond and creek and are nicely done,” she said.

Mayor Gerald Hall, on behalf of the City of Cedar Springs, expressed his gratitude to Anderson and the donors in saying, “These two Anderson sculptures are wonderful additions to our newest community park.”

In the late 1990’s, Anderson created two stainless steel hawks for Cedar Springs Public Schools with the larger 18-foot tall “Tom Brown Fire Hawk” being located in front of the football stadium honoring the late football Coach Tom Brown. This Red Hawk took about three months to construct with assistance from Tom Kloote’s and Dan Davis’s high school vocational education students. Coach Lonnie Armstrong assisted in the smaller hawk standing in front of the high school.

Anderson’s sculptures “Water Dance” is seen at the Rogue River Rockford Dam built in 2010.

Anderson’s father was a steel hauler and often brought home scrap metal pieces, therefore allowing him to create his first pieces in their garage. Anderson credits his mother for encouraging him to pursue his art and suggested he introduce his talents to the public eye by renting space in Wyoming’s Old World Village Mall back in 1975. Mr. Wally Murphy, Anderson’s strict and structured 7th grade art teacher, praised him and told him he possessed something very special.

Anderson married his childhood sweetheart, Janell, after earning his bachelor’s degree in 1975 from Grand Valley State University with a major in art and minor in business. Soon they were blessed with three sons—Troy, Cory and Chad. All three sons were accomplished Cedar Springs student-athletes. Many others benefited from Anderson coaching wrestling while his boys were involved. Both Janell and Steve were actively involved in volunteering with school and athletic organizations. They also kept an “all welcome at our home” policy for the young people of our community.

Currently, Troy is a sculptor in the summer when not teaching eighth grade at Rockford North Middle School. Cory is a Sheriff Deputy for Lake County in Florida, as well as being recognized as a very good sculptor. Chad is a full-time sculptor in the Cedar Springs area. Steve and Janell now spend winters with Cory in Florida doing 4–6 art shows a year featuring Anderson’s 3-D stainless steel and aluminum kinetic (wind activated) works of art. Anderson does five to 10 shows in Michigan and surrounding states during the summer. Eventually, Anderson hopes to only do commissioned sculptures for municipalities.

The Andersons priorities begin with a Christ-centered family foundation. They feel blessed to have family share in their passion for sculpture. This is demonstrated with the emergence of the third generation of Anderson artists—Troy’s 16-year-old son, Quaden. Sculpting has always been a family activity with the legacy of each being challenged to begin sculpting by the age of 12. Then, they learn other basic sculpting techniques such as raising and chasing metal with hammers into a sandbag.  

Anderson explained he does all sizes of sculptures and each one is an original inspired by the “Ultimate Master Sculptor, God.” And, while he doesn’t actually have one favorite piece he does have favorite features about each of his pieces. Features he particularly enjoyed creating with his two Heart of Cedar Springs pieces include the welded and ground textures on the head and neck of “Ascension” and the overall graceful flow and glass eyes on “Dragons Flight.”

When asked what words of encouragement he might like to share with young people he said, “Whatever you have a passion for, just stop and think about that thing you enjoy more than anything else. Never let money be the major factor. Now figure out how to make a living doing it.”

More information about Andersons Sculptures can be found at AndersonsMetalSculpture.com or you can email Steve Anderson directly with additional questions at Sculptor76@yahoo.com.

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New sculpture installed near amphitheater

Andrew Kline’s sculpture—Springs Eternal—is permanently installed in the Heart of Cedar Springs.

By Judy Reed

A new piece of artwork was added to the Heart of Cedar Springs area last weekend—one that hints at a bright future for the town.

Sculptor Andrew Kline

Local resident and sculptor Andrew Kline installed his sculpture titled “Springs Eternal” near the amphitheater, which is currently under construction just off W. Maple Street, behind the Cedar Springs Public Library.

Kline is the Assistant Conservator at Fredrick Meijer Gardens. He graduated from Western Michigan University in 2010 with a degree in sculpture, and has been with FMG for the last three years. He has a side business in conservation work, and is involved in all things pertaining to sculpture—including creating them. He has exhibited them not only in Michigan, but also in Indiana, Illinois, and both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Post asked Kline how he got his inspiration for the sculpture. “When I make a sculpture, I let the material speak to me,” he explained. “It’s a dialogue between us. It’s spontaneous. Whatever comes out is what it is. It dictates itself.” He noted that the abstract nature of the piece would allow the viewer to create his or her own interpretation.

The sculpture was previously exhibited at the Gerald R. Ford Museum, then was on display at Crystal Mountain for a couple of years. Kline explained that the lease was up there, and it needed a new location, and he wondered if it could be something that could be used in the Heart of Cedar Springs behind the library. It was purchased by the Community Building Development Team and is now permanently installed.

Kline felt the sculpture was a good fit for the site. “It sits on the site of a former steel foundry, and the sculpture is made of steel, so it’s drawing a connection to Cedar Springs’ past,” he explained. “And the name—Springs Eternal—hints at Cedar Springs’ bright and flourishing future.”

To view more of Kline’s work, visit his website at www.heavymetalsculpture.com.

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Library groundbreaking next Saturday, July 9


Years of plans and dreams are finally coming true—Cedar Springs is really going to have a new, much needed library building! The Library Board chose the contractor at their June 27 meeting, and a groundbreaking is scheduled for Saturday, July 9 at 5:00 p.m. near the Cedar Springs Fire Station, at the corner of Main and W. Maple Street. Everyone is invited. See the ad on page 11 and watch the Library website and Facebook Page for activities being planned for this event.

You may have read in The Post or The Bugle that over 900 people of all ages have signed up for the Library’s Summer Reading Program. This growth, along with the significantly increased use of the Library in general, has taken place in spite of not having adequate room. Your Library Staff is persistent regardless of the obstacles.

The current library building has only 2,016 square feet. The new library will have 10,016 square feet, a well-deserved treat to the citizens of Cedar Springs and surrounding communities.

Library Director Donna Clark is excited about what this groundbreaking means for Cedar Springs. “I have the distinct privilege of being the Library Director of our community library at this historic moment of groundbreaking, but I do not stand alone,” she said. “I’m only one, standing on the foundation prepared from the early 1800s to this present day, by a long line of educators, professionals, town folk, volunteers, and enthusiastic people of vision and hope. I celebrate with you who have served your local library as library employees and board members, and with our great City, who is walking this journey with us. I love it that we are building a whole City block of beauty and culture for future generations.”

There are new developments every week because the Library Board and several committees are meeting regularly to accept the bids of contractors and subcontractors, to choose materials, and to keep up with all of the details that require timely attention. “One of the most significant contributions of time during the past two years has come from Duane McIntyre, who will continue to serve as the Project Construction Manager at no charge. This represents a huge savings to the donors and citizens of our communities,” said Community Building Development Team Chair Kurt Mabie. “Many others have also contributed hundreds of hours to reach this milestone so that this dream could come true. Thank you to everyone! These gifts of time are extraordinarily meaningful and are greatly appreciated.”

A finance committee, made up of a good mix of local, respected professionals, is keeping track of the donations that are being made to the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) and the Cedar Springs Public Library. Donations for the new building and its contents are still very much needed and greatly appreciated.

This new library building is just one facility planned for the Heart of Cedar Springs, thanks to the CBDT and the Cedar Springs City Council and Planning Commission. They have all brought their influence to bear on raising funds and negotiating with governmental entities, as well as making sure the right people are available to support the many needs of such a large undertaking. Kent County is a wonderful place to live, thanks to a history of good leadership and smart planning. What is happening in Cedar Springs fits perfectly into the scheme of friendly, up-and-coming communities throughout Kent County. The value of these projects to the residents and businesses of Cedar Springs, and to all of northern Kent County, cannot be overestimated.

The Heart of Cedar Springs will include the following projects that are critical to the continued growth of Cedar Springs.

A library, designed and developed as a place to gather, a place where educational opportunities can be extended, a place where a community can meet, grow and learn together.

An amphitheater where outdoor plays, musicals, movies, concerts and more will fill the summer days and evenings for residents, as well as a place of respite for White Pine Trail and North Country Trail enthusiasts.

Rain Gardens and a Sculpture are a part of the continual beautification of Cedar Creek and its historic flowing spring, which will provide multiple opportunities for several school districts to collaborate with science experiments, and participate in research that can benefit Michigan water way protection and development. The new library will be a great source and meeting place for these classes.

A Boardwalk and Bridges along the Creek, initially running from Main Street to the White Pine Trail but eventually spanning through to Riggle Park and 17 Mile Road to be enjoyed by walkers, nature enthusiasts, and fishermen.

A Community Center that can be used as a FEMA crisis center, as well as provide a beautiful venue for wedding and retirement receptions, and many other community and personal celebrations and gatherings.

A Recreation and Fitness Center where the Parks and Recreation Department, various other recreational and fitness organizations, schools, and individual residents can focus on health and wellness as a community.

All of north Kent County will benefit and appreciate these facilities and open spaces. The value they bring to the Cedar Springs Community will be a legacy for years to come. Please get involved now to be part of this legacy.

Tax deductible donations can be made out to the Community Building Development Team and sent to treasurer, Sue Mabie, 15022 Ritchie Ave, Cedar Springs, Michigan 49319.

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Cable TV network films at Ice Festival

This artist in action was sculpting a hot dog with a face at the Ice Festival last Saturday in Rockford. Photo by R. Reed.

If you attended Rockford’s Ice Festival last weekend, you not only saw some awesome works of art, you may have seen a national cable television channel filming some of the sculpture artists in progress.

This ice well was part of a miniature golf course that kids could play on at Rockford’s Ice Festival last weekend. Post photo by J. Reed.

The Food Network was in Rockford last weekend filming Ice Sculptures LTD, the featured ice carvers for the second annual Ice Festival. The Grand Rapids based company will be the subject in a six-episode series called “Fire and Ice” that will be shown later this spring. The cable channel has been filming them all over West Michigan for the last week, and last Saturday it was in Rockford.
There were over 30 sculptures on display at the last week’s festival, including a miniature golf course that kids could really play on.  There were several contests, live demonstrations, and free hot cocoa to warm up guests.
Last year’s festival drew about 6,000, and it was estimated that this year’s festival drew about 11,000.

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