Iowa River Landing Sculpture Walk

Fusing Visual Art & Literature
Eleven permanent sculptures create the The Iowa River Landing Sculpture Walk. The works were installed in 2013 and were made possible through an Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs Great Places grant and City of Coralville funds.

About the Collection
Each sculpture is by an Iowa artist and is based on a work in the Iowa Writer's Library, located in the Coralville Marriott Hotel and Conference Center. The collection of approximately 800 books written by former students, graduates, and faculty of the nationally renowned Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa is maintained by the Coralville Public Library.

The sculptures are owned and maintained by the City of Coralville.

The sculpture park is located in the Iowa River Landing, just off I-80 exit 242.  The self-guided sculpture walk begins on the trail just east of Quarry Road and E. 7th Street. Get directions

See the Sculptures
Download a brochure and map (PDF)

To Dorothy, 2013
Artist: James Anthony Bearden (American, b. 1964)
Materials: Steel, green patina; 72 inches by 42 inches by 26 inches

Literary reference: “To Dorothy” by Marvin Bell (American, b. 1937) from Nightworks: Poems 1962-2000, 2000

Artist statement: “Marvin Bell thinks his wife, Dorothy, is beautiful because of her flaws and characteristics that make her unique. The poem focuses on what characteristics make Dorothy unique by saying that she is ‘beautiful, inexactly.’ Marvin accepts her flaws-the key to any love.”

After Trillium, 2013
Artist: Anthony Castronovo (American, b. 1979)
Materials: Cast aluminum, glass, and custom electronics; 96 inches by 48 inches by 48 inches

Literary reference: “Arboretum” by Mark Levine (American, b. 1965) from The Wilds, 2006

Artist statement: “In Mark Levine’s poem “Arboretum,” he explores the tradition of the arboretum as a way to probe man’s interactions with nature. My sculptures are techno-biotic representations of nature, and they aestheticize nature as a slick synthesis of old and new technology. In this relationship I see irony and cynicism, but also hope and excitement.”

Tipping Point, 2013
Artist: Sarah Deppe (American, b. 1988)
Materials: Stainless steel and aluminum; 120 inches by 84 inches b7 72 inches

Literary reference: “Sea Change” by Jorie Graham (American, b. 1950) from Sea Change: Poems, 2008

Artist statement: “In “Sea Change,” Jorie Graham refers to the mind and head, and environmental problems humankind is creating, especially overpopulation.  The layers of my human head are sectioned creating voids referring to the absence of human forethought Jorie Graham references in her poems.”

Gilead, 2013
Artist: Kristin Garnant (American, b. 1957)
Materials: Steel and stainless steel; 72 inches by 26 inches buy 26 inches

Literary reference: Gilead, 2004 by Marilynne Robinson (American, b. 1943)

Artist statement: “This novel is the story of fathers and sons and my sculpture is an interpretation of this family of men. The piece consists of a series of 4-graduated steel tubes nesting inside of each other with the smallest made from stainless steel. Like the rings of a tree or ripples on a pond, expanding outward, each sleeve represents a man in this story.”

Made of Money, 2013
Artists: Midwest Pressed: Aaron Wilson (American, b. 1972), and Tim Dooley (American, b. 1967)
Materials: Stainless steel; 120 inches by 48 inches by 48 inches

Literary reference: God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, 1965 by Kurt Vonnegut (American, 1922-2007)

Artist statement: “This novel presents Vonnegut’s consideration of the role wealth plays in achieving happiness. The protagonist is a WWII decorated veteran and an heir to an immense fortune. The war changes him and he decides to help people philanthropically, eventually opening an office in Rosewater, Indiana with a sign above his door reading ‘Rosewater Foundation: How Can We Help You?’”

Iowa Blue: The Urbane Chicken, 2013
Artist: Amber O’Harrow (American, b. 1970)
Materials: Cast aluminum; 62 inches by 36 inches by 76 inches

Literary reference: The Man Who Fell in Love with a Chicken, 1980 by David B. Axelrod (American, b. 1943)

Artist statement: “I have created a sculpture of the noble chicken, as described in the poem by David B. Axelrod. The Iowa Blue Chicken is the only breed of chicken that was created in the state of Iowa and bred to survive Iowa’s harsh winters and its hot summers.”

Alidade, 2013
Artist: Dan Perry (American, b. 1979)
Materials: Stainless steel and aluminum; 114 inches by 60 inches by 36 inches

Literary reference: “1, 2, 3” by James Galvin (American, b. 1951) from X: Poems, 2003

Artist statement: “An alidade is an instrument used by astronomers. My intention is for the form of the sculpture to resemble this tool while implying a shift in scale through a sort of forced perspective. The sculpture is composed of recognizable elements such as architectural structures and backyard fences combined with abstract references to the Iowa landscape and planetary orbits.”

Convergence, 2013
Artist: Victoria Ann Reed (American, b. 1978)
Materials: Aluminum; 96 inches by 24 inches by 24 inches

Literary reference: “The Visible World” by Jorie Graham (American, b. 1950) from The Dream of the Unified Field: Selected Poems 1974-1994, 1995

Artist Statement: “I am moved by Jorie Graham’s poetry …. my work is a kind of parallel to Graham’s, creating a vision of a thing from several different conceptual angles at once. While the object appears to be a figure, in reality the subject is the memory.”

From the River, 2013
Artist: Bounnak Thammavong (Laotian, b. 1980)
Materials: Stainless steel; 95 inches by 46 inches by 24 inches

Literary reference: Where Water Comes Together with Other Water: Poems, 1986 by Raymond Carver (American, 1938-1988)

Artist statement: “My art work is a derivative visual language inspired by my Asian-American heritage. I splice visual elements together to create a visual poetry. From the River is a depiction of a lowly river carp. I’ve dressed this carp in linear patterns that reference Frank Lloyd Wright’s stained glass windows, bringing nature, environment, and design into 1 form.”

Prairie Breeze Bench, 2013
Artist: Bounnak Thammavong (Laotian, b. 1980)
Materials: Painted and cor-ten steel; 96 inches by 25 inches by 20 inches

Literary reference: “Landscape-Iowa” by James Hearst (American, 1900-1983) from The Good Earth: Three Poets of the Prairie / Paul Engle, James Hearst, and William Stafford, 2002 by Robert Dana, Scott Cawelti, and Denise Low with a foreword by Michael Carey

Artist statement: “This work references the motion of prairie grass as it’s nearly flattened and almost torn off the soil and rock that it clings to by the wind. As a seat, this sculpture allows the viewer to find a moment of calm on an ergonomic shape while staring at the sky.”

A Thousand Acres, 2013
Artist: V. Skip Willits (American, b. 1956)
Materials: Weatherproof steel, stainless steel; 90 inches by 40 inches by 40 inches

Literary reference: A Thousand Acres, 1991 by Jane Smiley (American, b. 1949)

Artist statement: “The book is based on Shakespeare’s King Lear. In this story an aging farmer wishes to bestow upon his three daughters his kingdom: fields of 10-foot-thick topsoil. This sculpture depicts the figures of the three daughters, menacingly draped and surrounded in sheets of corrugated metal representing the farm fields and the secrets they hold.”