A snowshoe-clad polar bear, a needle-felted merry moose, busy beavers, adventurous bears and berry-picking hares (and even a few mythical Wild Bologna tucked away for good measure) – these are just some of the creatures you’ll find gracing the top of the new instrument. After 200 hours of sanding, priming and painting the piano, in addition to collecting and sculpting the clay animals, Alcock’s work was finally revealed during an official unveiling ceremony at the airport last Wednesday. (We’ll have more about the artist and her design in an upcoming post.)
Alcock’s creation is a celebration of the great Newfoundland outdoors and reflects a love and respect for the nature and wildlife found in our own backyard. Each of the four seasons is represented, with the left-hand side of the piano displaying information on the animals depicted, and the right-hand side showing the sections of the Trans-Canada Highway that run along the west coast. The bottom of the piano features an underwater scene with a couple of whales and school of fish happily swimming along.
Like the previously released public pianos, many hands came together to make this one a reality. The piano, sponsored by Humber Motors Ford, was donated by Grant, Katrina and Noah Hynes. It was painted at the Rotary Arts Centre in Corner Brook, with its kind support, and moved by Household Movers and Shippers Corner Brook. The glass display case was made and donated by Pen Mar Trades Limited.
The public piano program, launched in 2014, aims to highlight local artistic talent, create an engaged and lively atmosphere, and bring people together though unexpected musical moments. Joe Antle, General Manager of Humber Motors Ford, says it’s a program that the business is pleased to support.
“This is a terrific way to highlight the talent of our local musicians and inspire everyone with the joy that art brings to our lives,” he says.
Local musical phenom Noah Hamilton, who’s been playing the piano since the age of four, welcomed the piano to its new home in fine style as music lovers, travellers and guests listened and looked on. Hamilton was also on hand in 2015 to perform at the launch of the original Deer Lake Airport piano, which was also painted by Alcock (featuring an underwater theme) and sponsored by Humber Motors Ford.
The original piano was retired as a functioning instrument and gifted as a piece of visual artwork to Memorial University’s Grenfell Campus by Humber Motors Ford. The transfer took place during a separate event at Grenfell’s Fine Arts Atrium.
Other #ComePlayWithMeNL public pianos can be found at the St. John’s International Airport, St. John’s Farmers’ Market, Memorial University Student Centre, Atlantic Place, Health Sciences Centre, St. John’s Arts & Culture Centre, and Emera Innovation Exchange. Stay tuned for other launches in the coming months!