A new public artwork, Handwritten Moon, created by two local artists was installed in Jackson Park on Monday.

The metalwork text piece, entitled handwritten moon, is the result of a collaboration between the sculptor, Garrett “Owen” Gilbart, who fabricated the artwork, and the poet, Justin Million, who wrote the text.

Considering land, water and sky and the ways in which water shapes and cleanses us, Gilbart conceived the artwork as text set over a distorted Victorian bookplate hovering just below the surface of Jackson Pond and he commissioned Million to compose the text.

“After talking with Garrett about possible themes and inspirations for this project, I started asking myself a couple of questions: What kind of phrase would be aesthetically striking to read as laid over landscape? What kind of phrase can be both evocative and provocative, while also being respectful to any conceivable onlooker? I wanted anyone who may read it to feel something whether it is something about themselves or about the land,” Million said in the project proposal.

Handwritten Moon will be submerged in Jackson Pond near the Pagoda bridge until just before it freezes in late autumn and will be reinstalled next spring.

Handwritten Moon was commissioned as an artist-initiated project through the City’s Public Art Program. Special projects, such as artist-initiated projects, are a key area of ​​focus of the Public Art Program that enable the program to keep up with emergent practices and provide opportunities for artists to experiment.

The call for proposals was issued this spring and was open to both established and emerging artists, artist teams and collectives, including those interested in expanding their practices into the public realm for the first time. Artists could propose artworks in any scale, scope and medium in any part of the city. The competition received eleven submissions.

City public art projects are reviewed by selection committees composed of five members of the community with interests or expertise in contemporary art, architecture, design, engineering, history, or cultural tourism. The members of the Artist-initiated Projects selection committee were Su Ditta from the City’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Advisory Committee, and Jon Lockyer, Shenoa Poirier, Frank Flynn, and Cydney Langill from the community at large.

“This public art commission responds creatively and ingeniously to the site selected by the artists – grounded in the land and changing our perception of place in a way that transforms public spaces to bring new meaning to both Peterborough’s built and natural heritage.” said Su Ditta from the City’s Arts, Culture and Heritage Advisory Committee.

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