City aims to refurbish, relocate some of its art. First up: One trio of sculptures will be reunited.

Arts commissioners are focusing on existing city artwork, hoping to not only give new life to the pieces but also place them in locations to both avoid direct exposure to the elements and provide greater public access.
Under a plan working its way through City Hall, “Butch” the metal sculpture outside Ernest Coffee will join two similar sculptures at Demuth Park.

They may not be The Beatles, but it’s still welcome news that Ithiel, Squeeze, and Butch are reuniting. 

Why that’s news: Technically, the trio of spiraled metal sculptures by artist John Clement are uniting in the city for the first time. They were last together in Clement’s studio in 2007. Since that time, they’ve been living separate lives at the Regal Cinemas (Ithiel, the orange one), Palm Canyon Theatre (Squeeze, the yellow one), and Ernest Coffee (Butch, the red one).

  • The Palm Springs Public Arts Commission approved allocating $75,000 to remove the sculptures from their current resting spots, refurbish them, and place them in the median between the roadway and parking lot at Demuth Park.
     
  • The Parks Commission was also in favor of the idea. Now, the City Council just needs to issue the final approval for the moves Monday during its next regular meeting.

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Why it matters: Arts commissioners are focusing on some of the city’s existing artwork, hoping to not only give new life to the pieces but also place them in new locations to both avoid direct exposure to the elements and provide greater public access.

  • “We live in the ‘Age of Instagram,'” commissioners wrote in a report prepared for the Council. “… Every person who posts then becomes an ambassador for the beauty of Palm Springs.”

Behind the scenes: Demuth Park was chosen as the new home for the trio of sculptures for several reasons, including available space that will allow the art “to visually breathe” and a lack of wind and sand that would work to sandblast the art.

  • “We choose this specific location within the park as the artwork will be immediately visible from Mesquite, and also visible from the upcoming CV Link,” they wrote. “An added advantage is that with the mountains and palm trees behind it, it will photograph with a beautiful Palm Springs vista as its background.”
  • “We live in the ‘Age of Instagram,'” commissioners wrote in a report prepared for the Council. “… Every person who posts then becomes an ambassador for the beauty of Palm Springs.”

Behind the scenes: Demuth Park was chosen as the new home for the trio of sculptures for several reasons, including available space that will allow the art “to visually breathe” and a lack of wind and sand that would work to sandblast the art.

  • “We choose this specific location within the park as the artwork will be immediately visible from Mesquite, and also visible from the upcoming CV Link,” they wrote. “An added advantage is that with the mountains and palm trees behind it, it will photograph with a beautiful Palm Springs vista as its background.”

Next up: Once the moves are approved, the city will go out to bid on the work. The entire process is expected to take three to four months.

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