This illustration shows the character and scale of the sculpture "A Monumental Journey."
This illustration shows the character and scale of the sculpture “A Monumental Journey.”

The $1 million fundraising campaign for a major new art installation should be completed this summer, with hopes of an autumn ground-breaking, according to M. Jessica Rowe, director of Greater Des Moines Public Art Foundation.

The Foundation’s campaign is in support of a 30-foot-tall geometric sculpture to commemorate the founders of the National Bar Association, created in Des Moines in 1925. The association endures as America’s oldest and largest professional group of predominantly African-American lawyers and judges.

Designed by renowned artist Kerry James Marshall of Chicago, the black brick sculpture entitled “A Monumental Journey” will be in the form of two giant cones, one seemingly precarious in its perch atop the other. The form was inspired by African “talking drums,” used to communicate over distances.

The sculpture’s location has not been finalized, although sites along the riverfront or in the vicinity of the state’s Supreme Court building have been proposed.

In other news from the Public Art Foundation, three new directors have been named to three-year terms on the board: West Des Moines oral surgeon Darren R. Jirsa, Urbandale hospice nurse Kimberly Shadur and Des Moines attorney Kim Jay Walker. In addition, former board member Lois Fingerman was selected for emeritus status on the board.

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