Delhi Township Adds New Sculpture to its Realize Cedar Business District

Sculpture by Artist Mary Gillis funded by LEAP Public Art Grant with Support from PNC Foundation

Picture showing a podium with the Delhi Township seal and Sculpture Garden V

Sculpture Garden V designed by Mary Gillis sits at the corner of Keller and Cedar streets in Delhi Township (Holt), MI

The Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP), regional placemaking funders and the Delhi Township community dedicated a new art sculpture today at the corner of Cedar Street and Keller Road in Delhi Township. The new metal sculpture, titled Sculpture Garden V, is the latest piece of permanent public art funded in part by a $10,000 grant from the Lansing Economic Area Partnership’s (LEAP) Public Art for Communities (PAFC) grant program, with support from the PNC Foundation. Delhi Township chose renowned artist Mary Gillis of Mary Gillis Studio to activate the recently designed Keller Road open space gateway, adding another layer of life to Delhi Township’s downtown business district.

“We are thrilled to see this project come to life,” said Delhi Township Supervisor John Hayhoe. “We have put considerable effort in revitalizing our commercial district through our ‘Realize Cedar’ initiative over the past few years, with focus on our farmers market, multiple development projects, streetscapes and now Mary Gillis’ piece, to name a few. Many thanks to Mary, LEAP, the PNC Foundation and our staff for making it all possible.”

The new sculpture stands at the center of a new open space design along one of the community’s most heavily trafficked thoroughfares on Cedar Street, which supports 8,000 to 15,000 vehicles every day, according to Ingham County traffic studies.

“Placemaking is a powerful economic development tool when strategically implemented,” said Bob Trezise, president & CEO of LEAP. “The PAFC grant program focuses on transforming strategic locations through art — the heavily trafficked entrance to Delhi Township’s business district is a prime example. Investing in permanent public art projects enhances community image and enables Delhi Township and LEAP to attract people and grow businesses all across the region.”

Since 2012, the PAFC grant program has invested $260,000 across the three-county Lansing region, funding 35 individual permanent art installations of varying mediums. Gillis’ sculpture is the most recent addition to regional placemaking success.

“PNC has a long history of strengthening and enriching the communities it serves,” said Tim Salisbury, PNC regional president for Mid-Michigan. “Over the years, this program has enhanced a number of Mid-Michigan communities through the placement of unique artwork designed to reflect the personality of the local region.”

In 2015, LEAP formed a partnership with PNC Foundation, which focuses on early childhood education initiatives and economic development, including cultural enrichment programs that benefit communities. PNC’s annual $10,000 contribution helped expand the program and the number of pieces funded each year.

“This project has been a joy,” said artist, Mary Gillis. “Many thanks to all involved for selecting my design and for trusting me to create a sculpture for this beautiful spot. Sculpture Garden V is a happy piece. Though quite abstract, it draws heavily from nature, with lots of visual movement enhanced by light and shadow. Centered in an artfully paved corner park it stands at a height of over 12 feet in brilliant white. I am honored to know it will be shared with thousands of people each day.”

LEAP looks forward to launching the PAFC 2022 request for proposals before the end of 2021. Stay tuned at www.purelansing.com/publicart for more updates.