Welcome to Fostoria, Ohio! The Fostoria Area Visitors Bureau has been working to bring "new and different" to Fostoria with "larger and bolder" artwork in our downtown corridor.
Enjoy a walk or drive through downtown Fostoria, Ohio from Perry Street to Main Street, where you will see outdoor sculptures, beautiful murals painted on the sides of buildings as well as a collection of community barn quilt squares welcoming you to town!
The Fostoria Area Visitors Bureau spearheaded funding for Fostoria to be a host community for a Midwest Sculpture Initiative display again this year. Along the tour, you will see eight sculptures that will be on display through May 2021 as part of this Initiative. In addition, there are several permanent sculptures installed along the way.
"The Bus Stop" by Todd Kime of Ottawa Hills, Ohio is here as part of the Midwest Sculpture Initiative exhibit through May 2020. It is made of painted steel and measures 14' x 6' x 6'. It is on Perry Street in front of the Fostoria Learning Center and is available for purchase for $9,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "From architecture to art, a passion for the creative process drives my work. Using a wide spectrum of materials in various genres of art, I create art for other's enjoyment. A sense of whimsy is always prevalent in my work. Art allows me to share my passion."
Made of bronze, the sculpture entitled "Storytime" is placed by the main entrance to the Kaubisch Memorial Public Library on Perry Street by the Spellerberg family in honor of their parents, David and Jeanne Spellerberg. Sitting on a bench is a young girl reading a Dr. Seuss story book to her cat. The book is open and text and pictures from the story are engraved inside.
The sculpture was created by the National Heritage Collectors Society, which was founded by Fostoria native, David L. Spellerberg, Jr. It was dedicated on Mother's Day 2007.
The Fostoria Area Visitors Bureau worked with muralist Derek Brennan to create "The Early Birds" mural in 2018 located on the side of 304 North Main Street. It shows the importance of shopping at local businesses and how the Fostoria Farmers Market has been an important way for the community to do that. The whimsical and playful birds shopping reflect the friendly interactions and relationships that form when you get to know the business owners you are buying from. This mural also features a barn quilt in the design, which reflects our strong agribusiness footprint. The mural gives a nod to the Fostoria Garden Club, who coordinates the Fostoria Farmers Markets, and to the Greater Fostoria Community Foundation, who provided funding for the mural.
"Night Lily" by Pamela Reithmeier of Monclova, Ohio is in Fostoria as part of the Midwest Sculpture Initiative display through May 2020. It stands 8' x 5' x 4' at the corner of Main and Center Streets and is made of steel and paint. The piece is available for purchase for $7,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "I love to see people interact with my sculptures. Whether it is a nod of the head, a smile, or having their picture taken with my pieces; it does not matter as long as there is connection in some way between the sculpture and the viewer. I have found I am drawn to making sculptures inspired by nature. I particularly enjoy the permanency and strength of steel and the mental and physical challenges that come with working in this medium."
"The Guardian of the Seasons" mural on the side of 301 South Main Street was finished by muralist Derek Brennan in 2017 to reflect growth and transformation and to mirror the many things the Greater Fostoria Community Foundation and the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation are doing to better the city and the lives of people in it. As Ohioans we truly get to see all the wonderful changes of the seasons which are showcased in the mural. Many times we even experience all four seasons in a week. This mural features a barn quilt, to signify the start to Fostoria's barn quilt trail initiative as we work to grow a connector trail through the city. The Greater Fostoria Community Foundation funded this mural, which was commissioned by the Community Improvement Corporation of Fostoria.
"The Creatures of the Sky Arch" welcomes visitors to the Fostoria Farmer's Market green space on Main Street and Tiffin Street. Created with steel by Jim Gallucci of Greensboro, North Carolina, the sculpture reaches 9'5" x 11' 3" x 3' 4" and is on display with the Midwest Sculpture Initiative exhibit through May 2020. It may be purchased for $18,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "Art is a physical manifestation of an idea or event that calls forth an emotional response from the viewer. It speaks to us and evokes a chord deep within us. Good art challenges us, can make us feel righteous, moves us, soothes us and can bring us peace."
"To Hope" by William Walther of Norton Shores, Michigan is on display in front of the Fostoria Learning Center as part of the Midwest Sculpture Initiative through May 2020. It is made of steel and measures 7 ' x 9' and weighs approximately 2,000 pounds (a ton!) and is available for purchase for $25,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "To Hope is about hope and healing. The tear shape is used throughout the sculpture to represent hurt and healing. Unintentionally, the sculpture has been displayed also as a bench."
Made of steel by Ric Leichliter of Sugar Grove, Ohio, "Promise to Flower" is 20" x 4' x 18' and sits next to the Kaubisch Memorial Public Library at the corner of Perry and Fremont Streets.
Promise to Flower was part of the 2018/2019 Midwest Sculpture Initiative exhibit in Fostoria. The Fostoria Area Visitors Bureau received a personal donation from Greg and Lesa Mullins and a grant from The Gregory Mullins Advised Fund of The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida to purchase the sculpture as a memorial to Greg's father. Mark Mullins was very active in the Fostoria community from 1967 through 1984, serving on various boards and was heavily involved in civic and charitable leadership roles before moving to Florida.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "The teeter-totter of shifting polarities led me to a lifetime of spontaneous combustion. A natural connection to super heated metal, hammers and carving mallets seems a foregone conclusion. I have immersed myself in that grand cathedral we call the wild places. It is from there that I draw all inspiration whether it is studying the perfect symmetry of a leaf or the abstract forms created by the everchanging light and shadows."
"Phoenix" by James M. Havens of Woodville, Ohio is made of welded stainless and cast iron, rubber and steel wheels, and measures 9'8" x 13' 10" x 7' 6". It is located at the corner of North Street and North Main Street. It is in Fostoria as part of the Midwest Sculpture Initiative through May 2020 and is available for purchase at $18,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "I intend that my sculptures should contain enough information that the viewer is not confused or mystified by the artist's intent. I wish to be considered a good journeyman ironworker who demonstrates a high degree of craftsmanship while using the best materials to create enduring sculptures that speak to the highest aspirations of the human spirit."
"Sentinel" by Brian Ferriby of Huntington Woods, Michigan sits in front of 125 South Main Street. It is made of painted steel and stands 7.5' x 3' x 2'. Part of the Midwest Sculpture Initiative exhibit in Fostoria through May 2020, the piece may be purchased for $3,500.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "I fabricate sculpture because it is a joining of my passions. The forms integrate architecture, music and nature. I do not try to imitate nature. I conceive my sculptures as a parallel creative process. Insight gained during the creation of each work provides the inspiration for the next. I continue to search for expressive relationships as of yet unexplored. I work with the materials, history and geography of the Great Lakes region, while seeking to communicate universal themes. The meaning of the work is encoded in the physical properties and formal relationships experienced by the viewer."
This bicycle was a gift to Fostoria from the Leadership Seneca County Class of 2017 to promote bike riding. We think it fits in nicely with the sculptures —and it is an actual bike rack!
By Jim Collins of Signal Mountain, Tennessee, "Big Wheel Watcher" is made of mixed metals with a powder coat finish. It stands 5' x 5' x 2' in front of the Kaubisch Memorial Public Library. It is on display in Fostoria through the Midwest Sculpture Initiative exhibit through May 2020 and is available for purchase at $5,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: Working in a figurative manner, Jim's sculpture style has been characterized by the use of silhouettes of people and animals that are constructed of stainless steel, aluminum and other metals. His work can be found in many collections in the United States and Ireland, with the majority located in the Southeastern United States.
Muralist, Derek Brennan of Lakewood, Ohio has created new life and brought color to downtown Fostoria with the addition of three murals over three years.
The mural "Ohio Proud" brings attention to famous Ohio landmarks collaged together with local animals and local lifestyles. The artist's goal was to make color a priority in this piece and for people to be surprised when they travel around the corner and see the mural on the side of the building at 321 North Main Street. Commissioned by Dr. Timothy P. Sulken in 2016, this mural is a focal point for patients who visit his dental practice next door.
"Questions" by Robert Garcia of Whitehouse, Ohio is made of painted steel at 7' x 7' x 5' and is placed at 122 North Main Street. It is on display in Fostoria through the Midwest Sculpture Initiative through May 2020 and is available for purchase for $5,000.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "Making outdoor sculpture has been a growing process which I believe helps me to simplifiy and strenghten my artistic expression. With outdoor sculpture, the intensity of involvement, intent and scale of the process is magnified. Merging the various disciplines of art, design, technology and engineering bring new excitement to my artistic experience. The choice of images is based on aesthetic considerations, hoping to visually stimulate and engage the viewer to freely respond or interpret. During the long hours of labor, I wonder why I'm doing all of this work. Then I think my sculpture may possibly be an interpretation of my observation and the learning of universal forces of nature, physics and unlimited, human activities all learning of universal forces of nature, physics and unlimited, human actions all miraculously and precariously harmonizing in this one and only world we know. Perhaps, in a perfect world, these works may serve as symbols of this phenomenon."
Fostorian Toni Lucadello created "Copper Fire" of painted steel. It stands 4.5" tall on the Fostoria Municipal Lawn. It was purchased as a permanent piece by the Fostoria Community Arts Council with support through a grant by the Henry H. Geary, Jr. Memorial Foundation.
ARTIST STATEMENT: "Art can serve as a catalyst to explore new subjects. My motivation for creating sculptures and wall designs is based on science concepts ranging from biology to theoretical physics. The intent is that the science related titles of art would stimulate discussion and exploration, perhaps leading to new perspectives. Art and science both use the creative process of preparation, incubation, illumination and verification and therefore reinforce one another. Therefore, whether designing an art object or developing a science experiment, the creative process is activated."
Commissioned by the Fostoria Area Visitors Bureau, this barn quilt collage was created by Bev and Dave Lang along with many community members in a new-fashioned "quilting bee". Some barn quilt squares were chosen to represent our community history. See if you can tell which ones!