Foster Willey

Studio

Work

Faces of Rondo

2013

Victoria Station, Victoria St. & University
The Green Line, St. Paul, MN

Commissioned by:
the Metropolitan Council

Terra Cotta, Glazed Portrait and Narrative Tile Precast Architectural Concrete Portrait Panels, Stainless Steel Free Standing Panels Manganese iron-spot and Glazed Thin Brick Masonry Veneer Electrical Cabinets: 12’ L x 6’ W x 8’ H at 4 locations, Artwork dimensions vary.

Victoria Station is one of eighteen stations along the new Green Line connecting St. Paul to Minneapolis in Minnesota. Adjacent to the historic Rondo community in St. Paul, “Faces of Rondo” commemorates the individuals past and present, who have contributed significantly to national causes of civil rights, labor unions and regional culture. Sixteen over life size portraits sculpted in low relief acknowledge each person. The community was directly involved in the selection of these individuals. The station artwork also includes narrative tile that reflect the history of the neighborhood. The portraits were fabricated in the studio from photographs taken by the artist. Thin brick veneer covers the primary structures of each platform with selected statements engraved into the brick offering subtle context for the larger portraits. The artwork was carefully integrated into the station architecture. The artist collaborated with architect Guy Willey on the project.

Hamline Prairie Station

2013

Hamline Station, Hamline & University
The Green Line, St. Paul, MN

Commissioned by:
The Metropolitan Council

Terra Cotta Glazed Ornamental Tile, Glazed Masonry Thin Brick, Stainless Steel Decorative Panels, Stainless Steel Guard Rails Electrical Cabinets: 12’ L x 6’ W x 8’ H at 4 locations, Artwork dimensions vary.

Hamline Prairie Station is inspired by Prairie School Architecture and plays on the motifs of regional sources, specifically the work of William Purcell and George Elmslie. Also known as progressive architecture, the Prairie style was a combination of geometric and organic forms; the station provides a modern context for new designs that are both original and complimentary. The artist collaborated with architect Guy Willey to carefully integrate the artwork into the existing architecture of the platform shelters and cabinets. University Avenue has been called “a true American street”, the integrated public art offers an aesthetic experience that will enhance the daily commute by bringing to light this important Midwestern art form.

Regeneration

2013

Healing Garden, Owatonna Hospital, Owatonna, MN

Commissioned by:
Allina Hospitals & Clinics

Bronze, Precast Concrete
9’ x 3’ W x 3’ D

Regeneration is an elegant, abstract sculpture that celebrates the legacy of Allina Hospitals by metaphorically representing the spiritual and healing aspirations of the hospital and clinics. The form consists of graceful contours that move in an upward direction, evoking a sense of serenity and hope.

Minnesota Menagerie

2011

Minneapolis Convention Center and 13th Street, Minneapolis, MN

Commissioned by:
The City of Minneapolis Art in Public Places, SRF Consulting Group Inc.

Bronze, Terra Cotta, Architectural Precast Concrete

Minnesota Menagerie is a collaborative effort with SRF Landscape Architects to create way-finding signage providing directions from the Convention Center to the Nicollet Mall and surrounding venues. Sculpted elements enhance the Marquee Monument Sign and two Kiosk Monument Signs introducing a sense of play. The ornamentation evokes the natural resources of the state, offering visitors an introduction to the native fish and fauna of Minnesota. Enhancements include a bronze sturgeon, running wolf and giant walleye. The Signs also include a series of inset tile in terra cotta that are based on the Minnesota state symbols, including the Loon, Monarch Butterfly, and the Morel Mushroom. Inset on the Marquee Monument Sign is an art deco design in relief that moves vertically up the monument.

Triskele

2010

Robert Trail Library, Rosemount, MN

Commissioned by:
City of Rosemount

Bronze, Cast Stone, Flagstone, Up-lighting
12’ H x 9’ W x 9’ D

Triskele is a freestanding sculptural form that is inspired by Irish iconography and contributes to the strong Irish sentiments of the Rosemount community. It serves as the focal point for the Robert Trail Library. The triple spiral or triskele is a symbol consisting of three interlocking spirals. The triple spiral appears in various forms of Celtic art, with the earliest examples having been carved on pre-Celtic stone monuments, and later examples found in Christian illuminated manuscripts. Celtic Spirals have many interpretations, one of which is a symbol of the three realms – land, sea, and sky. It is a symbol of eternal life and one of the oldest symbols of human spirituality. Triskele consists of three spirals placed side by side. Its lyrical design expresses both transparency and movement, complimenting the strong contemporary lines of the architecture.

The Bee Way

2009

1621 West End Blvd, St. Louis Park, MN 55416

Commissioned by:
The City of St. Louis Park, Duke Realty, Anderson Real Estate

Welded Aluminum, Terra Cotta, Cast Stone, Powder coated Steel, LED Lighting, Paving
66’ L x 33’ W x 22’ H

"The Bee Way” is a unique sculptural plaza and gathering space. It is set in the retail complex the “West End” and pays homage to the regional history of the City of St. Louis Park and the honeybee. “The Bee Way” consists of two cast stone columns, inset with a honeycomb relief pattern and terra cotta tile. At the top of the columns are kinetic “Swarm Sculptures”, fabricated aluminum elements that represent the whirling flight of bees. These lyrical abstract forms move on a central axis when activated by the wind. A bee wing bench compliments the two columns. Honeycomb paving runs through out the plaza and unifies the sculpted elements. The plaza is dramatically lit for night viewing by in-ground up lights and LED lights at the top of each column. The beehive barbecue (or fireplace) built in the late 30 “s by the WPA, inspired "The Bee Way". The project involved collaboration in many areas, including community outreach where children helped make tiles.

Photo Credit: Jerry Mathiason

Central Avenue Contemporary Stelae

2006

Central Ave and 33rd & 35th Ave NE, Minneapolis, MN

Commissioned by:
The City of Minneapolis, Art in Public Places

Bronze / terra-cotta / pre-cast concrete / stone
2 @ 10’ H x 20’ L x 15’ W

The project consists of two monoliths (stelae) with artist designed benches and cobblestone surround at two locations along Central Avenue. The Stelae depict the history of the North East neighborhood: the Shoreham train yards & the milling industry. The 4020 includes the bronze steam locomotive depicted on top of one of the stele, built in NE Minneapolis Shoreham yard during the depression. Thematic bronze and terra cotta relief sculpture adorn each side of the stelae. The Flying Wheat Stalk consists of the wheat stalk crown ornament and includes bronze and terra cotta relief sculpture relating to the milling industry. The sculptural forms are intended to engage both pedestrian and automobile traffic.

Centrifuge

2004

Nicollet Commons Park, Burnsville, MN

Commissioned by:
The City of Burnsville and the Burnsville Foundation

Bronze, Stainless Steel, Red Granite, Sandstone 10’ L x 10’ W x 12’ H

Heart of the City and Nicollet Commons Park won the 2006 Award of Excellence from the MN Society of Landscape Architects and in 2013 received the “Great Places Award” by the MN ULI and Sensible Land Use Coalition. “Centrifuge” is the featured public art element.

““Centrifuge” is a monumental abstract sculpture conceived with elegance and grace for the City of Burnsville. The sculpture is the centerpiece for the City’s Nicollet Commons Park and the Heart of the City Development. The project involved collaborating with landscape architects and structural and aquatic engineers. The elevated sculpture was carefully scaled and integrated into the site. The design of “Centrifuge” utilizes negative space to create a form that is expansive; the design includes the stainless steel bowl, red granite base and the sand stone surround. The artwork symbolically represents the character and spirit of Burnsville. Other elements created for the park include bonze fish and frogs located at the water wall.

4th Avenue Bridge Leaders Wall

1998

4th Avenue and the Midtown Greenway, Minneapolis, MN

Commissioned by:
The City of Minneapolis
Restoration 2008, The City of Minneapolis Art in Public Places

The Artwork consists of 50 life-size portraits of community leaders from Philips and Central Neighborhood in South Minneapolis. The artwork is located on the bridge abutment of the 4th Ave Bridge and adjacent to the Midtown Greenway. People from the two communities were selected for commemoration because of the positive impact they had on the neighborhood. The faces were sculpted in clay in two-hour sittings at the artist’s studio. Faces of the deceased were sculpted from photographs. Each portrait was placed on a rock shape that corresponded to the faux rock pattern of the concrete bridge abutment. Portraits were then molded and cast. Originally cast in concrete the portraits were installed and dedicated in1998. The City of Minneapolis, Art in Public Places commissioned the recasting of the faces into bronze in 2008.

Faces of Rondo, Hallie Quinn Brown

2013

Precast Architectural Concrete

42" H x 26" W

Faces of Rondo, Mamoud El-Kati

2013

Terra Cotta

20" H x 16" W

Faces of Rondo, Rhoda Stroud

2013

Terra Cotta

20" H x 16" W

Archbishops John Roach & John Ireland

2011

St. Thomas Academy, Mendota Heights, MN

Terra Cotta

18" H

Portrait of a Young Girl

2005

Terra Cotta

18" H

Foster Willey Sr.

2004

St. Joseph, MI

Bronze

20" H

Portrait of Earl

1999

Bronze

20" H

Leaders Wall, Peter McLaughlin

1998

Bronze

Life Size

Leaders Wall, Meridel Lesueur

1998

Bronze

Life Size

Portrait of Donna

1986

Bronze

22" H

Mustafa Naguib

1984

Glenn Ellen, IL

Bronze

18" H

Winged Iris

1994

Kalamazoo, MI

Commissioned by:
The City of Plymouth

Bronze, Precast Concrete

9’ H x 3’ W x 3’ D

Winged Iris

1994

Kalamazoo, MI

Commissioned by:
The City of Plymouth

Bronze, Precast Concrete

9’ H x 3’ W x 3’ D

Winged Iris

1994

Kalamazoo, MI

Commissioned by:
The City of Plymouth

Bronze, Precast Concrete

9’ H x 3’ W x 3’ D

Resonance

2005

Female nude torso

Commissioned by:
Pat & Lisa Denzer, Minneapolis, MN

Bronze

Life Size

Annunciation

2004

Religious sculpture depicting the Virgin Mary.

Commissioned by:
Bohemiawerks, Church of the Annunciation, Minneapolis, MN

Located at the main entrance.

Bronze

7’ H/p>

Annunciation

2004

Religious sculpture depicting the Virgin Mary.

Commissioned by:
Bohemiawerks, Church of the Annunciation, Minneapolis, MN

Located at the main entrance.

Bronze

7’ H/p>

Brothers Karamazov

1999

Two stone carved busts.

Commissioned by:
Paul Dorn, Minneapolis, MN

Alabaster

3/4 Life Size

Brothers Karamazov

1999

Two stone carved busts.

Commissioned by:
Paul Dorn, Minneapolis, MN

Alabaster

3/4 Life Size

Commemorative Portraits

1994

Alvin & Emily Tedrow Little

Challenger Learning Center, Kalamazoo, MI

Bronze

28" H

The Resurrection

1987

St. Joseph Catholic Church, St. Joseph, MI

Mahogany

9' H

The Resurrection

1987

St. Joseph Catholic Church, St. Joseph, MI

Mahogany

9' H

Grandmother

1985

Private Commission

Kalamazoo, MI

Bronze

Regeneration

2008

Bronze, Stone

24" H

Phoenix Icarus

2007

Bronze, Stone

20" H

Classical Studies
Catherine

2007

Bronze

36" H

Repetition
Anonymity

2006

Bronze, Resin

70" l x 65" H

Classical Studies
Roxanne

2006

Bronze, Stone

36" H

Psyche II

2005

Bronze, Stone

24" L x 12" W x 18" H

Abstraction

2005

Bronze, Stone

24" L x 14" W x 20" H

Winged Spiral

2005

Bronze, Stone

16" L x 8" W x 18" H

Classical Studies
Jamie

2005

Bronze, Green Glass

15" L x 7" W x 16" H

Centrifuge Model

2004

Bronze, Stone

18" H

Fountain Frog

2004

Nicollet Commons Park

Bronze

24" L

Classical Studies

2000

Bronze

" L x 5" W x 24" H

Phases

1999

Bronze, Wood

38" L x 18" W x 4" H

Psyche

1990

Concrete, Mesh

32" L x 28" W x 36" H

Vortex

1990

Bronze

32" L x 32" W x 36" H

Seated Figure

1986

Gantos Corporation Headquarters, Grand Rapids, MI

Welded Steel

40" L x 28" W x 38" H

Repose

1985

Bronze

48" L x 24" W x 28" H

About the Artist

“My work invokes an archetypal resolution through the creation of forms that express both mass and transparency.”

I have been creating work in the public art realm for the past fifteen years. My work encompasses large-scale projects for various municipalities and design settings including commissions in bronze, fabricated metal, pre-cast concrete, terra cotta, and stone. I am very interested in the built environment as a context for public art; where sculpture and design meet to enrich daily life.

My work as a public artist is adapted to the specifics of the opportunity. As a sculptor I am able to bring a range of design and fabrication skills to any public art project. My sculptural designs supplement a collaborative process that includes a community’s voice.

I am committed to the role of public art as the synthesis of artistic vision, community and urban design.

My work is both abstract and representational. My interest in the figurative tradition and architectural ornament is central to my artistic vision. Of equal importance is the influence of early modernists, from which my explorations into abstraction have evolved.

Animating form thru the plasticity of materials and utilizing negative space to express both mass and transparency have been the focus of many of my sculptural investigations. These formal concerns inform the symbolic content of my work, which often involves the search for an archetypal resolution. It is my feeling that these qualities are relevant in the depiction of human striving and our shared lived experience.

Contact

612.782.8629

607 22nd Ave Ne, Minneapolis, MN 55418