Nicollet Mall Public Art that’s Up… and Coming

As construction on Nicollet Mall finally rolls to its conclusion, the crowning touches include new and returning public art.

Prairie Tree, a kinetic work by Ned Kahn, has alighted on the northeast corner of the intersection of Nicollet and 11th Street near WCCO. View a photo essay of its installation here and learn more about this artist who also created The Wave at Target Field.

Hail Minnesota, a series of eleven different cast iron manhole cover patterns by Kate Burke were the first works from the 1990s to return to the Mall. They are a handsome counterpoint to the etched concrete pavement. Burke recounts winning the commission and how she fabricated the patterns in the days before computers.

Shadows of Spirit by Seitu Jones, Ta-coumba Aiken and poet Soyini Guyton – also from the 1990s – has been restored and reinstalled (before restoration and after, above) between 12th and 13th Streets. Each bronze shadow inset features a poem honoring the people who made Minneapolis including the first documented Chinese immigrant:

from china
to this rivertown
he brought family

Minnesota artists Jones and Aiken talk about their intentions for the work here and what this early work has meant to their careers.

Coming this Month

Beloved remnant of the original 1960s design for the Mall, the perpetual motion Sculpture Clock by Jack Nelson will be reinstalled at the southeast corner of 11th Street. Read the fascinating story of the Sculpture Clock and view photo essays and videos about its rebirth and restoration by conservator Kristin Cheronis here and then visit the Mall to see the Sculpture Clock in motion for the first time since 2002.

Enjoyment of Nature, a seating ensemble with granite boulders, square benches and a circular bird bath by Kinji Akagawa will return, installed in a lush, shady grove of plantings at the north end of the Mall. People and birds will both benefit from its new location.

Nicollet Lanterns, a new work by Blessing Hancock featuring poems by Minneapolis writers Moheb Soliman, Sagirah Shahid, Junauda Petrus and R. Vincent Monez, Jr. (Nu’Eta) will be suspended along the west side of Nicollet between 6th and 8th Streets. Read about Nicollet Lanterns with its timely and pertinent poems and profiles of the young writers.

Installations 2018

Nimbus by Tristan Al-Haddad will form a sculptural canopy over the Theater in the Round seating amphitheater in front of Central Library. Illuminated from within at night, the sculpture will appear to levitate. View design plans and progress with fabrication here.

Tableau: A Native American Mosaic granite paving carpet by esteemed Minnesota artist George Morrison, will be reinstalled at the south end of the Mall in a grove with seating near the entrance to the Loring Greenway.

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