Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Public reception for Chief Bemidji artist on Tuesday

BEMIDJI — The public will have a chance Tuesday to meet artist Gareth Curtiss, who will be creating a bronze statue of Shaynowishkung, also known as Chief Bemidji.

A public reception with Curtiss will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesday in council chambers at Bemidji City Hall. In a press release, Curtiss said it is his desire "to produce a great work of sculpture that will be a source of pride and appreciation for (Bemidji), its visitors and the Anishinaabe People."

Curtiss’ career has spanned nearly 30 years and is recognized as a master sculptor, the press release said. Figurative sculpture is a trademark of his, including all aspects of large-scale bronze casting and fabrication, including welding, patina and mold making, according to the release. Past commissions include a life size bronze statue of Chief Black Hawk for the Aurora Public Schools in Aurora, Ill.

During his visit, Curtiss also will meet to discuss design development ideas with the Leech Lake descendants of Shaynowishkung, other committee members and city officials, the release said. He will also review plans for the statue platform and site.

Curtiss’ work on the statue of Shaynowishkung will take a year to complete, and will be installed in May 2014 in Library Park.


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