Saturday, February 13, 2010

Lee Kelly ~ Reprised, Part of the Portland Transit Mall

On one less than sunny day, I walked past this sculpture by Lee Kelly the artist of Week 23 here at Fifty Two Pieces. It is part of the Portland Transit Mall, very near Burnside on SW 6th Ave. Since Kelly is a long-time Portlander, Portland is graced with many of his works. I selected the post from 5 June 2009 to reprise. I love the shot of Kelly working in his studio -- those hands have created so much.
For all of the posts from Week 23, click here.

Originally posted on Friday, 5 June 2009
Lee Kelly ~ The Hands that Made "Arlie"


Here are the hands of the man who made Arlie, our featured sculpture of the week. Lee Kelly was born in 1932 and has made art longer than probably most of the people who read this blog post have been alive. He has done so many things in those seventy-seven years. Think about that, seventy-seven years alive on this planet, living in the Pacific Northwest. Born in Idaho he spent part of his childhood here in Portland, served in the Korean War and returned to the Portland area. He has travelled widely, across many continents and his artistic works reflect those experiences as well as the totality of the life he has led.

He is an inspiration for the artists and public here in Portland providing much needed support for the artistic community when he could easily not be involved. There are a few videos of Lee Kelly available to watch on the internet. This one from OPB will really give you an insight into the man and his art. Those of us who have experienced his works are fortunate and those who are part of his inner circle are the ones who are truly blessed.

Lee Kelly has a studio in an old barn on property outside of Salem. That's where he has creates his art by welding and grinding. It would be a real treat to visit there. Not all of us can do that. So Oregon Public Broadcasting did a video interview of him there in Salem. The video linked here cannot be embedded as youtube and vimeo productions can be. So for a look at Lee Kelly, his life and his art, click this link ... Lee Kelly on OPB.

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