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Healdsburg new home of kinetic sculpture

  • The Aero-5 sculpture. (COURTESY PHOTO)

Healdsburg's latest piece of public art is a departure from some of the other sculptures that have been installed in recent years.

The kinetic sculpture, set atop a 14-foot-long, stainless steel pole, revolves with the wind.

The work by Cupertino artist Moho Ohtake is part of a style intended to mesmerize with movement.

“Does it make any noise?” City Councilman Jim Wood asked at this week's council meeting.

“It's quiet,” assured Ray Holley, the spokesman for the Voigt Family Sculpture Foundation which sought and obtained permission to install the piece in the city's West Plaza park.

Wood wanted to make sure that guests in the nearby Hotel Healdsburg would not be subject to noise from the artwork, dubbed “Aero-5.”

The sculpture of multiple, metal orbs will be close to the hotel pool and patio and the Bear Republic Brewery.

Currently Aero-5 is on display at Paradise Ridge Winery in Santa Rosa. But it could be in place in Healdsburg by Christmas, depending on the weather, according to Holley.

The installation requires the pouring of a foundation to secure the artwork to a concrete base. There is a planter there now, which replaced a fountain.

“It's a great location for a piece of art,” said outgoing City Councilman Steve Babb.

Aero-5 is part of a partnership between the city and the Voigt foundation that in the past seven years has resulted in about two dozen sculptures being placed in public places, mostly along the Foss Creek Pathway. Some of the artistic benches are in Giorgi Park.

Ohtake's public pieces have been put on display in Santa Cruz, San Francisco, Dublin, Ireland and Tokyo, Japan, among other places.

In a short Santa Cruz Community Television profile, Ohtake said his kinetic sculptures are “like a science fair project.”

“The outcome is created by nature,” he said of the moving artwork. “When it's stormy, it's chaotic and wild.”

City Council members were confident it will be a good match.

“Everything the Voigt Foundation has done is first class,” said Wood.

(You can reach Staff Writer Clark Mason at 521-5214 or clark.mason@pressdemocrat.com.)

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