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Public Art Park, Suwanee, Georgia


Where Gumbo Was #515

Suwanee, Georgia is a small city on the outskirts of Atlanta that was originally settled by the Native American Shawnee tribe. Although it flourished, it eventually succumbed to European settlers. It grew after the railroads brought more people and businesses to the area. As many British-settled places, the names of places were altered from Shawnee to Suwanee.

Mural 1

The Public Art Park is located in the main part of the city and reminds me of English greens that I saw during my visits to England. The park was very relaxing to stroll through and quiet. Lots of places to sit and relax if tiring. Sculptures are not barricaded, so children as well as adults can look very close up and touch. The town has been working to become a gravity center of art and the “Old Town” area has also been known as the SculpTour Park. Many of the sculptures are installed on a rotating basis while others are permanent.


First up is the LOVE sign, at the top of the page, which is seen in many cities. This one was voted a fan favorite and has not been rotated. My favorite was “Mommy” by Lee Benson. It was created to capture a particular drawing that the artist’s granddaughter, Reese Benson, drew when she was very young.

Mural 2

A few musical murals also were in the park. I was surprised to recognize the faces since I am out of touch with music artists after 1990. Can you identify?

Mr RingsSunburst

The very tall sculpture “Mr. Rings” was created by Gus and Lina Ocamposilva, a husband-and-wife team of self-taught sculptors to honor the freedom of the human spirit. Reminded me of a childhood circus visit. The Sunburst sculpture was created by Hanna Jubran to focus on the early sun beaming through the clouds. Hmmm.

Humpty Dumptywho let the dogs out

Next up was another favorite of mine: Humpty Dumpty. I still believe he didn’t just fall, but was pushed. “Who Let the Dogs Out?” by Jim Collins who resides in Signal Mountain, Tennessee are a series of Dalmatians constructed of powder-coated stainless steel and are the approximate size of real Dalmatians. The larger dogs weigh 35 pounds while the smaller ones weigh 15 pounds.

Griffin9 11 remembrance

A rusty colored “Griffin” by Jonathan Bowling from Kentucky focused on mystical beasts feeling they were more accessible to most people than abstraction. Part of the permanent collection in the park is “Remembrance” by Marc Moulton a tribute to 9-11. It features a damaged, twisted relic (not in my photo) from one of the World Trade Center towers, which was given to Suwanee by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. It includes a 9-11 historical timeline with stainless steel letters and numbers embedded into a cement pad as well as an inverted conical sculpture, with the lower Manhattan cityscape cut into it.

Iron CanopyMetaphysica

Then we have “Iron Canopy” by Artist, Phil Proctor, which is a sculpture fabricated of steel and aluminum that includes moving elements. Some research shows me that you can have this piece for $25,000. “Metaphysica” by Phil Proctor is work that attempts to elicit a reaction or emotion through the use of abstract geometry, composition, and color. It weighs 4,000 pounds and is 15 feet tall.

Harriet Tubman Bench

Lastly is the Harriet Tubman Bench by Gary Lee Price from Idaho and Springville, Utah. Born into slavery, Harriet Tubman was one of the first abolitionists and a ‘conductor’ of the Underground Railroad – a network dedicated to the liberation and freedom of those who were enslaved during the era of American slavery. Many eateries line the park including “Tequila Mama Taqueria” which has a few of its own sculptures.

Tequila Mama Taqueria 1Tequila Mama Taqueria 2

Parking around the art area is free in some places and paid timed in others, but very generous with the amount of time. The park is free. Also, there are many, many more sculptures in the area inside and outside the local buildings.


Images (15)
  • 9 11 remembrance
  • Griffin
  • Harriet Tubman Bench
  • Humpty Dumpty
  • Iron Canopy
  • Love Sign
  • Metaphysica
  • Mommy
  • Mr Rings
  • Mural 1
  • Mural 2
  • Sunburst
  • Tequila Mama Taqueria 1
  • Tequila Mama Taqueria 2
  • who let the dogs out

George G

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