Inaugural sculpture festival begins in Dearborn

Teams of artists from across the state of Michigan recently spent their Saturday afternoon digging through piles of recycling scraps at Red Metals Recycling on Telegraph Road. Now they have two weeks to make sculptures out of what they found.

The first ever Dearborn Sculpture Fest kicked off this past Saturday, Sept. 15. The competition pits teams of artists against each other as they each sculpt up to 500 pounds of scrap into artistic sculptures.

Artists will drop their sculptures off at the Fairlane Town Center on Friday, Sept. 28 where the works will then be put on display and put up to a public vote.

A VIP preview party will be held at the Bar Louie on Michigan Avenue on Friday, Oct. 12. A live auction that is open to the public will be held there the following day.

The auction serves as a fundraiser for the Dearborn Area Chamber of Commerce. Proceeds from the event will be split 50/50 between the Chamber and the artists.

Dearborn has always been an extremely art-friendly town, says Jackie Lovejoy, President of the Dearborn Area Chamber of Commerce.

"I challenge anyone to go 30 days without art," Lovejoy says, listing everything from a song on the radio to a child’s sidewalk chalk drawing.

"Art feeds the economy. Artists move to an area which then leads to the economic revitalization of that area."

Husband and wife Chris Nordin and Michelle Plucinsky are two of those artists. The couple owns the Glass Academy in Dearborn. They are also competing in the sculpture contest, though on different teams.

Even for artists like Nordin and Plucinsky, who each have been professional artists for the past 30 years, such a contest as this can test one’s abilities.

"Doing something like this is challenging because it makes you think outside of the box," Nordin says.

"It stimulates the art community in Dearborn, which is both important for the city and the artists themselves."

Learn more about the Dearborn Sculpture Fest and its associated events online.

Got a development news story to share? Email MJ Galbraith here or send him a tweet @mikegalbraith.

Read more articles by MJ Galbraith.

MJ Galbraith is a writer and musician living in Detroit. Follow him on Twitter @mikegalbraith.
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