Friday, November 5, 2021

Donating Artwork and Celebrating the Grand Opening of the New Dalworthington Gardens' City Hall

As a member of the building committee that helped the new city hall in DWG take shape, I am happy to announce that the grand opening of the building is almost here. On Thursday, November 18 beginning at 5pm, the City of Dalworthington Gardens will hold a grand opening celebration.

There are some very special elements in the new building. Another alderman built and donated the big table for the conference room. It is awesome and even includes the DWG symbol burned into the wood by a custom built branding iron. The table is very elegant with a dash of rustic charm that gives a nod to the City's tag line, "a rural oasis in the heart of the metroplex".

I offered to donate some artwork that would tap into that theme as well. I brought up several examples of my photographic art images I had printed for me as gallery wrapped canvases for the mayor to look at a month or so ago. After looking around the building we thought the conference room was the perfect place to hang some pieces. With the way the windows were laid out in there and the plans already anticipated for the other walls, it looked like two horizontally oriented and two vertically oriented 16" x 20" works of art would be most appropriate. I wanted the images to be of nature that had been photographed in DWG. I had two landscape oriented dragonflies that I had photographed in my backyard and a portrait oriented study of a great egret that I took in Gardens Park. I needed another vertically oriented image.

Great egrets are large birds that frequent Pappy Elkins lake in Gardens Park. A comparably sized bird that also hangs out around the lake is the great blue heron. I did not have an image worked up yet for a 16" x 20" piece of art based on a great blue heron photo I had taken, but thought that was what the fourth image needed to be. I hunted through the photos I had taken over the years in the park to see if I had a suitible one. I wanted to find one where the heron was standing in a similar posture as the egret on the canvas that was already printed and I wanted them to be facing each other once they were hung on the wall. I also wanted the final alteration of my heron photo to take on a similar characteristic as the other three pieces of art I was donating. I found a few original photos of mine that I thought had potential. After working with this group, I settled on one that I thought best fit the criteria I had set out. After completing the image it was time to send it off to be printed on canvas. I always cross my fingers when I do this with a new image. Some images look better printed on different substrates so even though I print out proofs on paper on my printers, I am never 100% sure of how the print on canvas will look. I think it turned out nicely and compliments the egret very well.

One other donation I made to the overall project was to save some of the plants that continued to grow on the original homestead site, even though the old house had been removed years ago, and ultimately return them to the site. I cared for them for over a year until we could tell if there was an appropriate place to set them around the new building. We decided the bed on the north side of the building would make a good location for these hardy, easy care plants. When the plants in the bed mature a bit more, I will take some pictures and make a post about that garden.

(Click on the images to enlarge them.)

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