by Gabe Meline
"When I think of public art," Boback Emad keenly observed during an interview earlier this year, "I think of a bunch of children holding hands around a globe."
It was no surprise, then, that when Emad's wife finally succeeded in convincing him to enter Santa Rosa's call for artists to decorate the triangular intersection of College, Healdsburg, and Mendocino Avenues, he discovered that one of the other finalists had submitted, yes—a sculpture of a bunch of children holding hands around a globe.
Emad's design won, and we can all be grateful. You can read about it in the profile I wrote on Emad and his sculpture in the the Bohemian; additionally, what you're seeing here is a computerized image of what the intersection will look like once his sculpture is installed. Nothing arouses the ire of citizens quite like public art, but in the context of some truly terrible public art in Santa Rosa, I'd say it's a virtual godsend.
On or around June 28, in the middle of the night, the sculpture will make its way slowly down the middle of College Avenue, clearing the Highway 101 overpass by just a couple feet (anyone ever see X's film The Unheard Music, where they film a house being carted through Los Angeles in the dead of night?). I'm planning on watching it, and if anyone else wants to check it out too, lemme know and I'll keep you updated on the exact date.In other public art news, does anyone out there have a name yet for The Fish installed earlier this week at Prince Gateway Park? Somehow I find it fitting that the inventor of LSD died the same day that this multi-colored delight appeared in a hallucinogenic reincarnation. That said, we could dub the fish sculpture "Albert"—or, since the park's very inviting, downhill entrance reminds me so much of Gate D at Fenway Park, how about "Ortiz"?
And, since I can't mention Santa Rosa Creek without mentioning the complete atrocity of the creek being forced into three blocks of concrete tunnels in the late 1960s, I'll say it again: the creek is looking better than ever, but please, don't let's abandon the idea of pulling it out of its underground cell one of these days. Yes, it'll be expensive, but an open creek, running through downtown: can you imagine it?