Del Mar to consider public art for civic center

The Del Mar Civic Center.
(Karen Billing)

The Del Mar City Council unanimously voted July 11 to begin the process of adding public art to the civic center.

“I would just hope that the council would take the position that yes, we do want public art at the civic center,” said Del Mar City Councilmember Dave Druker, one of the council’s liaison’s to the city’s Arts Advisory Committee. “We don’t have any idea what that’s going to look like. We’re not going to have really any say over that, but if we have any doubts or misgivings about putting any type of art at the civic center, now’s the time to say we’re just not ready for it.”

The Arts Advisory Committee previously identified 40 possible locations throughout the city for public art, according to a city staff report. Four of those locations were at the civic center.

For the last year, there has also been a master plan for a temporary outdoor sculpture program, which includes sculptures at five locations along Camino Del Mar and 15th Street. The nonprofit Del Mar Foundation contributed funding and management.

The Arts Advisory Committee, Del Mar Foundation and council liaisons will choose a consultant with technical and artistic expertise on the next steps for adding public artwork at the civic center. Some of the next steps also include evaluating specific locations based on criteria such as view impacts and architectural compatibility, and deciding on specific pieces of art to acquire.

Public art already on display includes “Hanging Out” by Maidy Morhous at 15th Street and Stratford Court, “Birds Eye View” by Petrello and Graham at the southeast corner of 14th Street and Camino del Mar, and “Terpsichore” by David Beck Brown at the southeast corner of 12th Street and Camino Del Mar

Del Mar City Councilmember Terry Gasterland said “being among art is just a wonderful thing.”

“Let’s aim high and let’s do really well,” she added.