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Plans call for sculpture to be located at downtown park
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[Image]
Artist’s rendering courtesy of SUNCOAST STONE SCULPTORS GUILD.
Plans call for a sculpture called “Imagine in Stone” to be donated to the city of Dunedin.
DUNEDIN – If all goes according to plans, in the next 10 months or so the marble image of a lovely lady will grace a downtown city park.

And not to worry – she will be family friendly.

The Suncoast Stone Sculptors Guild plans to donate a sculpture called “Imagine in Stone” to the city. Once completed by sculptor C. Fulton, it will be moved from the Creative Arts Building to Wee Garth Park, at Main Street and Virginia Lane.

In approving the sculpture, which will have a value of about $30,000, city commissioners June 15 approved the project and agreed to pay for the concrete footing, sculpture pedestal and lighting at a cost of about $6,500.

Commissioner Deborah Kynes, who is the commission’s liaison to the Dunedin Fine Arts Center, has been involved in the planning for the donation. The sculpture will be about 7 feet high.

“Wee Garth Park has no real figurative values there now,” Kynes said. “It’s really a special place for a really special piece of art.”

Drawing laughter, she also told attendees at the commission meeting not to be concerned about the rendition of the sculpture shown on a screen.

“I have to say. You see that lady up there. I know she doesn’t have much clothes on. That’s not the lady they are saying they are going to put up there. Because people would be going, ‘Oh my gosh, is this family friendly?’” Kynes said.

It will be, she said.

The guild chose the image of the lady to pay homage to the rich history of women who have worked hard in the city to incorporate the arts into Dunedin’s daily life.

The sculptor, C. Fulton, who has studied in Italy for years, is the founder of the stone-carving program at the Dunedin Fine Arts Center. She has been sculpting for about 28 years.

“I do want to let you all know how grateful I am to have the opportunity to do this sculpture for the city of Dunedin. I do take great pleasure in doing it,” Fulton said.

Donna Vislocky, Suncoast Stone Sculptors Guild president, said her organization is fortunate to have Fulton, a master stone carver, as a member.

“Stone carving has been C.’s life work,” Vislocky said.

Under the proposal, the city would provide lighting for the statue and look at ground irrigation for a flower bed around it, space permitting.

The city’s Arts and Culture Committee endorsed the project.

Commissioner Moe Freaney said her most important concern was that the commission needs to have an engineer’s review or sketch of the sculpture to ensure safety, noting that an accident had occurred several years ago at Edgewater Park. A boy lost some toes climbing a monument at the park, and the city had to pay a settlement.

City Housing and Economic Development Director Bob Ironsmith said the city needs certified drawings from a structural engineer for the project.

Commissioners agreed that having such drawings be a condition of their approval.

Mayor Julie Ward Bujalski said the donation from the guild was a kind gesture.

“We did talk about this for literally an hour so it was important to us trying to figure it all out. I think we can all agree that once we have our guidelines put in place, we won’t have such lengthy conversations about process,” Julie said. “The most important thing is we are going to get a great piece of art added to the community.”
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