Standing at 16 feet tall and 12 feet wide, it's hard to miss the blue and orange statue that seems to have been erected overnight at the roundabout of Palm and Cocoanut avenues. And for Sarasotans who want a chance to welcome the newest neighbor in town, there will be a dedication ceremony on Monday, April 8, at the sculpture's location at 5:30 p.m., with a reception to follow at Florida Studio Theatre.
"Jumping Fish" was created by artist Jeff Laramore, who took inspiration from Sarasota's coastal community. "Every time I go to the beach, or sit in a boat, the simple act of a fish or a dolphin breaking the surface of the water has never gotten old," he says. "It’s part of the texture of coastal living. The concept is straightforward, but the challenge was to create something that was graceful, yet abstract enough to entice the viewer to look at it more than once."
For Laramore, "Jumping Fish" represents the city's commitment to showcasing the arts. "I’ve always been impressed by the city’s abundant collection of public art; it’s world-class. It’s a place that clearly believes in art, and I’m impressed by their continued action to commission more artists as well. I feel honored to be a part of this."
"Jumping Fish" is now the 84th piece to be added to the City of Sarasota public art collection. And since it's a piece of public art, Laramore is hopeful that it will be accessible to all. "An art installation can infuse a space with meaning. At their best, sculptures become sights that are treasured by the community."
As of right now, Laramore is working on several pieces independently, and is in talks to create a sculpture in Grand Rapids, Michigan. His other work can be found on his website.