Friday, October 1, 2010

the fields project Bringing Art and Agriculture Together Oregon

The Fields Project is located in Oregon, IL, nestled in the scenic Rock River Hill Country. It is located amid state forests and parks, historical sites, sandstone outcroppings, prairie vegetation and wild life. This biodiversity has provided endless subject matter for artistic expression. Lorado Taft established The Eagles Nest Art Colony here in 1898. It continued through 1942 bringing in artists from the Art Institute and University of Chicago.

Our objectives are to focus public attention on art, agriculture, and our natural resources while creating new relationships between artists, farmers, environmentalists, and educators.

For painters, photographers, and sculptors, we have a nine-day program that includes lodging on a working farm. During this time, the artists can apply their art or choose to do a Field Sculpture. A Field Sculpture is an opportunity to “paint with the land” by cutting/mowing flora on a piece of land that can be up to 5 acres in size. These Field Sculptures are designed to be viewed and photographed from the air.

On the last Sunday of the event, we have a Fine Arts & Crafts Festival where visiting artists display and sell their work, along with regional artists and sculptors. The festival is held at Mix Park, located on Rt. 2, south of Rt. 64 in Oregon, IL.

There is a sculptor’s competition each year and the winning maquette is reproduced as a life-size bronze sculpture. Our goal is to place ten outdoor sculptures in the Oregon area in ten years. The first sculpture was installed in 2005. When the project is completed, there will be 16 public sculptures on the Oregon Sculpture Trail.

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