OCEAN CITY – A sculpture of dolphins will join other artwork placed in Ocean City to be viewed by those entering the resort as it will placed at the foot of the Route 90 Bridge.
Ocean City Development Corporation and its Public Art Committee came before the Mayor and City Council this week proposing a new sculpture of three dolphins to be located at the southwest corner of Route 90 and Coastal Highway on city property. The OCDC is working in collaboration with city staff to determine a final location.
“This is one of several art projects from the OCDC public art program,” OCDC Executive Director Glenn Irwin said.
The OCDC’s first public artwork was the white marlin sculpture completed by the eastern shore local sculptor, Paul Lockhart, in 2002. The OCDC raised the funds to pay for this artwork through private contributions, which has now become a landmark feature in Ocean City. This artwork welcomes visitors to Ocean City entering from the Route 50 Bridge.
In 2007, the OCDC and the Town of Ocean City installed the “Spillin’ the Wind” eagle sculpture completed by David Turner of Turner Sculpture from Onley, Va. This artwork was funded by proceeds from the former OC Beach Bird program and several fundraisers by the OCDC’s Public Art Committee. This sculpture graces the northern entrance into Ocean City at 144th Street.
“The only entrance into town we have not touched on yet is at the foot of the Route 90 Bridge,” Irwin said.
The proposed sculpture is of dolphins made of bronze with a concrete or granite base to be located near the Route 90 entrance. The base is 7 to 8 feet in height and the three dolphins measure 8, 7, and 5 feet in length with a bronze wave as the supporting base. The bronze sculpture will stand approximately 9 feet tall in height and will be anchored to a pedestal.
This proposed artwork will be specifically made with a design unique to Ocean City, and the OCDC believes it will become another signature piece for Ocean City.
“The OCDC Public Art Committee has been thinking about what would be appropriate for that spot, and it came to that one of the most iconic things associated with Ocean City is dolphins,” Lauren Taylor of OCDC Public Art Committee said. “As you know, they swim up and down the coast, and people on private or commercial boats all stop, and as the dolphins swim around the boat everybody gets excited.”
Local landscaper Bryan LeCompte of Yard Designs will be designing a park to surround the sculpture like what was constructed around the White Marlin at the foot of the Route 50 Bridge.
The OCDC will be raising all funds for the art project. The committee will be developing a website to help the public donate to the public, as well as several fundraisers will be held starting with “A Magical Evening” on March 22 at the Captain’s Table restaurant.
A sponsorship will be available for individuals to sponsor a dolphin, which will entitle the sponsor to name that dolphin.
Upon final installation, which is estimated to take place in June, the artwork will be conveyed from the OCDC to the Town of Ocean City as has been the case with the other OCDC sculptures on City property.
The OCDC is requesting the town provide materials and labor for up lighting at the site for the public artwork, assist with the installation and clean and wax the bronze sculpture once per year. OCDC will purchase artwork and pay artist to deliver and assist in installation of artwork at site.
The Mayor and City Council voted unanimously to approve the request.