Stone Mountain Village to Dedicate First Public Art
Although residents and visitors to the Village of Stone Mountain have enjoyed the relief carving on the side of the mountain for decades, until now, there was no public art sited within the boundaries of the town, which shares its name with the mountain. That will soon change, when the City of Stone Mountain dedicates its first piece of public art, a sculpture by Decatur artist John Thigpen.
The sculpture, “Granite Workers,” was commissioned by Main Street Stone Mountain, Inc., as part of a major streetscape project that will give the Village’s business district an exciting new look when completed in October. There will be a ribbon-cutting to celebrate the streetscape and a dedication ceremony for the sculpture on Friday, October 8, at 3:00 p.m. on Main Street. This will also be the grand opening of the six artists’ studios that are part of SMart, Inc. (an Arts Incubator Microenterprise project) in Stone Mountain. All events are free, and the public is invited to join the celebrations.
Thigpen’s sculpture was selected from a number of proposals through a competitive panel process. The panel consisted of a professional sculptor, an arts administrator, a city council member, a representative from Main Street Stone Mountain, and members of the community. They all agreed that this piece effectively captured part of the history of Stone Mountain—both the Village and the Mountain—and that it would be an appropriate centerpiece to the newly renovated Main Street.
Thigpen used granite salvaged from the quarry at Stone Mountain and Cor-Ten steel to create “Granite Workers.” Silhouetted figures are cut in steel at the top the sculpture, like shadows of the hard-working men who first quarried granite from the Mountain. Below them lie the tumbled blocks of stone that they labored for. Pat Wheeler, Mayor of Stone Mountain, says, “We are thrilled to dedicate the first public art in the Village. Public Art enlivens public spaces, tells a community’s history, and can become a focal point. We hope to add more pieces in the future.”
For more information about the streetscape project, the Arts Incubator, or the public art, please call ART Station at 770-469-1105.
ART Station is located at 5384 Manor Drive in Stone Mountain Village. Box office hours at ART Station are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. All proceeds benefit the ongoing programs of ART Station. Founded in 1986, ART Station is a non-profit contemporary arts center that provides cultural and educational opportunities to the entire community. ART Station is a 501(c) 3 non-profit corporation.