Two large sculptures have recently been installed at two parks that lie along 26th Avenue N. in north Minneapolis.
Local artists created a 15-foot “Purple Raindrop” to be placed at Farview Park and a 15-foot-high archway called “Aqurbane” at Theodore Wirth Regional Park, the Minneapolis Park Board announced Friday.
Esther Osayande’s “Purple Raindrop” sculpture and seating area honors the late Prince Rogers Nelson and is painted in the iconic “Purple Rain” shade.
Christopher Harrison’s “Aqurbane” was inspired by his trips along the avenue to the Mississippi River. The large arch was made with more than 65 patinated bronze and steel attachments to create a makeshift “gateway” into the park, the board said in a news release announcing the new artwork.
Osayande and Harrison were part of a public art project that “engaged emerging artists to diversify and enlarge the pool of public artists in the Twin Cities,” the board said. Park Board commissioners reviewed and approved these pieces during an October 2017 board meeting.
This is both Osayande’s and Harrison’s first time creating three-dimensional outdoor sculptures. Their work is part of a series of other art pieces on 26th Avenue N., including “Big Book” by Christopheraaron Deanes at Nellie Stone Johnson Community School.
The artwork on this busy street is part of a larger project, which includes a bike trail from the regional park to the Mississippi River, that seeks to increase North Side access to the river.