Foundation unveiling sculpture downtown


Robert Indiana, "LOVE" (blue faces, green sides), 1966-1992, polychrome aluminum, 144 x 144 x 72 in, private collection, Singapore. © 2018 Morgan Art Foundation Ltd./Artists Rights Society, or ARS, New York

A piece of art with a universal message will be a fixture in downtown Grand Rapids.

The Grand Rapids-based Frey Foundation will unveil the “LOVE” sculpture by artist Robert Indiana on Wednesday.

“We want to continue the momentum this city has experienced really in the last half a century, starting with Calder, Split Ring, Maya Lin’s 'Ecliptic,' ArtPrize and other great artworks around the city,” said Tripp Frey, a Frey Foundation trustee. “We wanted to add to that and add vibrancy to the downtown core.”

The 8 x 8-foot sculpture will be mounted on a platform at Louis Campau Promenade. The piece is sculpted with the letters “LO” above the letters “VE,” painted in blue. The insides of the letters are painted in red. The letter “O” is slanted to the right.

Frey said the promenade is the perfect location for the sculpture, because it will be across the street from Rosa Parks Circle and the “Ecliptic” design by Maya Lin and near the Grand Rapids Art Museum.

“I think it is going to enhance this great section of the city and make it an outstanding place to go for a stroll or have lunch,” Frey said. “I hope we have a lot of wedding proposals, prom photos and anniversary photos taken in front of the sculpture.”

Grand Rapids now will join a distinct set of cities across the world, from New York to Jerusalem, to Tokyo and Philadelphia, that display an iconic “LOVE” piece.

Indiana’s original sculpture was created in 1965, and it is now displayed in the Indianapolis Museum of Art.

“The ‘LOVE’ sculpture is approachable. Everyone can relate to it,” Frey said. “Everyone deserves to be loved, everyone wants to be loved and everyone wants to give love. No matter what your love of life is, the color of your skin or your sexual orientation, everyone can relate to love. We just think it is a great message to send.”

The Frey Foundation was founded in 1974 by Edward Frey and Frances Frey.

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