Public Art Committee
Jenny Willigrod, Chair
Public Art in Fountain Hills
Over the years, the Fountain Hills Public Art Committee and many other organizations have worked to create an excellent collection of public art.
Pieces are located the Centennial Circle, inside of the Fountain Hills Community Center, in the Library & Museum, Town Hall, in Fountain Park and else-where throughout the Town of Fountain Hills. Our goal is to create the finest collection of public art in the Southwestern United States.
How art is acquired
Public art is acquired through three primary methods:
1) by the active procurement of a specific work of art or the selection of an artist for a specific project
2) as a result of a gift or loan whereby the Town becomes a beneficiary
3) as a result of the percent for art public art contribution
Criteria applied to art under consideration
Regardless of the method of acquisition, there are certain fundamental criteria that will be universally applied to any work of art under con-sideration:
* Artistic merit
* Physical condition of the artwork
* History and provenance of the artwork
* Compatibility with the Town's public art program and collection
* Availability of an appropriate siting location on Town property.
* Requirements for installation, storage, and maintenance
* Liability considerations and issues of public safety.
For more information, use the links below.
History of Public Art - "The Milestones: A Desert Odyssey though Public Art"
Jerry and Jackie Miles lived in Fountain Hills since 1986. While neither is artistically inclined, Jackie is musical and Jerry very creative. Throughout their married lives they visited many art galleries and museums and enjoyed collecting pieces of art for their home.
In 1997 two coincidental events took place that set in motion the beginning of the Fountain Hills Public Art collection. Jackie Miles became one of the founders of the Fountain Hills Arts Council and Jerry Miles was elected Mayor of the town. Through Town Council Resolution 1997-44, the Arts Council became the authorized agency of the Town for the development and promotion of Public Art in Fountain Hills.
After the death of Jerry’s mother in 2001, the couple decided to purchase a piece of sculpture in her honor and to place it in their hometown of Fountain Hills. They chose the piece by Jason Napier, “Precious Cargo” which was placed near the then new Community Center. In that same year, Jerry Miles, who was also a board member of the Library Association, convinced that board to purchase Mark Lundeen’s, “A Good Book” and place it just outside their building.
These two pieces, placed in the area now known as the Milestones Sculpture Garden, began the Town of Fountain Hills’ magnificent Public Art collection.
Money was always difficult to come by to purchase more pieces for the collection but with Jerry’s creative mind he developed a variety of ways to convince the town’s residents to make donations. He also convinced the town council to pass a “percent for public art” which provided limited funding from commercial construction.
Jerry and Jackie Miles have always envisioned that Fountain Hills would become famously known for its Public Art collection and that people from all over the world would someday visit it. For over ten years Jerry and Jackie have attended the Loveland Colorado Sculpture Show where they have personally met world-renowned artists and viewed their exquisite works from which much of the Fountain Hills collection has grown. However, Jerry and Jackie have also chosen works from local artists which have given a very personal pride to the collection.
Jerry and Jackie’s unique expertise in choosing art has resulted in a Public Art collection that spans all forms of art and reached 100 pieces by the Arizona Centennial of 2012. To honor the founders of the Fountain Hills Public Art, Jerry and Jackie Miles, the collection has been named, “Milestones: A Desert Odyssey through Public Art.”