New Public Artwork Unveiled at Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park

Pottawattamie Arts, Culture and Entertainment (PACE) have announced a new addition to Council Bluffs’ public art collection: Looking Up (2015) by Tom Friedman. The sculpture is thirty-three feet high, made of crushed aluminum foil, roasting pans, and baking tins. The humanoid-like sculpture appears to be gazing up at the sky.  

“Tom Friedman’s work evokes a sense of wonder and challenges the imagination, especially with the transformation of everyday ordinary objects into modernist sculpture. Looking Up is both sophisticated and accessible,” said Danna Kehm, PACE CEO. “However, the meaning, as well as beauty, will always be in the eye of the beholder. We hope the community appreciates the opportunity to experience such a significant piece of modern art created by a world-renowned artist.”

The sculpture is one of three and was previously installed on Chicago’s lakefront prior to a stint on Park Avenue in New York City. Looking Up will be on display in Council Bluffs for one year at Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park. A dedication for the sculpture is scheduled for May 21.

The one-year exhibition is thanks to an anonymous donor, PACE, and the City of Council Bluffs for working together to bring the sculpture to the park.

“Public art not only serves to beautify our green spaces, but it also provides visitors and residents with even more access to cultural opportunities in our parks," said Mayor Matt Walsh. “This is just another example of how Council Bluffs is ‘Unlike anywhere else. On purpose.’”

The Omaha-Council Bluffs metro was ranked among the top 10 medium-sized “Most Arts-Vibrant Communities” in the 2018 Arts Vibrancy Index thanks to our extensive collection of public art. See a list of other public art pieces in town on our Things to Do page.

This post was originally published on May 10, 2019 on the Unleash Council Bluffs blog.