Back almost 30 years ago in 1991, the City of Albuquerque unveiled a turquoise-arched gateway to the Ridgecrest neighborhood. Atop of the 26-foot pedestal,
sat a ’54 Chevy covered with midnight-blue tiles. It quickly
acquired the name "Chevy-on-a-Stick" & back then, it seemed to have caused quite an uproar.
Although some had called it "a monstrosity" & one former city councilman suggested ″a neighborhood party with sledgehammers″ would take care of it, artist Barbara Grygutis was serene in describing her art piece, from an AP article:
″It’s about the dreams & aspirations of our culture,″ she said. ″We put cars on pedestals. It’s a very American image." In fact, Ms. Grygutis appreciated the hubbub. ″If people don’t talk about it, even argue about it, then you haven’t succeeded,″ she said. ″The dialogue is very, very healthy - it gives the piece a sort of life of its own.″
Check out Ms. Grygutis' website--she certainly has not stopped her creative process after the Chevy-on-a-Stick controversy...
The One Percent For Art fund paid $75,000 for the piece at the time. More than a quarter of a century later, the piece continues to create conversation, & still draws folks from all over the city; clearly it has taken on a life of it's own.
More MetroABQ public art here...