Spoonbridge and Cherry
Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis
Stainless steel and aluminum painted with polyurethane enamel
29 ft. 6 in. x 51 ft. 6 in. x 13 ft. 6 in. (9 x 15.7 x 4.1 m)
Commissioned February 1985 by the Walker Art Center
Gift of Frederick R. Weisman in honor of his parents, William and Mary Weisman
Installed May 9, 1988
Inaugurated May 11, 1988
The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is located in front of the Walker Art Center. Designed by the architect
Edward Larrabee Barnes, it encompasses four large plazas, each 100 feet square and containing sculptures situated symmetrically along a broad allée that runs north to south and culminates in a wider area, which in the original plans was divided by a circular pool. The large field was intended for temporary installations.
In searching for a subject that was horizontal and included fountain elements, so as not to dominate the other
sculptures in the garden, we tried a spoon over water, terminating in an island, similar in form to an earlier fantastic proposal to replace Navy Pier on Lake Michigan. Its silver color and edges suggested ice-skating, a popular activity during Minneapolis' several months of winter. The raised bowl of the spoon, in its large scale, suggested the bow of a ship. Coosje, however, had always considered the spoon form in itself too passive a sculptural subject, which she had once playfully demonstrated by placing a wooden cherry with a stem made from a nail into a spoon found in the studio, an act that instantly energized the subject. The combination was now repeated in the presentation model for the garden sculpture. The cherry stem was situated in a contrapposto relation to the curve of the spoon and eventually turned into a fountain: while spray from the end of the stem disperses in the air, water issues silently from its base, coating the voluptuous cherry so that it glistens. The cherry is aligned with the long axis of the garden allée, dramatically attracting visitors with its deep red hue. The former circular pool was transformed into the shape of a linden-tree seed pod and cattails were planted along its edge.
Spoonbridge and Cherry, takes on a new aspect in the winter season. The water is shut off, but, topped with snow, the cherry turns into a mouthful of ice cream sundae.
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