The gushing deer of 'Circulation' at the Grandview Heights Aquatic Centre.

The gushing deer of Surrey’s newest pool

Meet the artists at the official unveiling of the "Circulation" artwork on June 11.

A bold, contemporary artwork titled Circulation by Pierre Sasseville and Jean-François Cooke will be formally recognized as part of the opening celebrations of Surrey’s new Grandview Heights Aquatic Centre (16855 24 Ave.) on June 11 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on June 11.

Formal remarks begin at 12:30. The artists will be in attendance and will give a talk about their work starting at 1 p.m.

Circulation is a two-part sculpture of deer that references the dual purpose of the Grandview Aquatic Centre: Family-oriented recreation and professional competition.

One sculpture facing 168 Street consists of a pair of giant pipes rising out of the ground that attach to a sculpture of a giant faucet.

A chromed pipe extends from the faucet in what appears to be a stream of water pooling on the ground. Drinking from the stream of water is an oversized bronze sculpted fawn.

This animal, a traditional symbol of childhood and youth, illustrates the building’s recreational side that includes a 500-square-metre leisure pool with a lazy river feature, water slide, spray features and tot’s area.

A second sculpture marking the centre’s entrance from the parking lot appears as a stream of water gushing out of a series of giant pipes. As people approach, however, they will realize that the running water is actually a dynamic assembly of six life-sized chrome deer with their horns entwined.

The arrangement of these animals will evoke the mirror-like effect of two powerful streams of water confronting one another, powerfully illustrating the spirit of competition in this 10-lane, 50m FINA-standard Olympic size competition pool with world-class diving facilities.

Playful and thought-provoking, these sculptures present familiar forms of deer that are altered in unexpected ways to spark conversation about the natural and built environment, and our relationship to both.

“This artwork is the outcome of an international call to artists issued by the city leading to portfolio submissions from 94 qualified artists,” said Coun. Judy Villeneuve, chair of the Public Art Advisory Committee.

“Cooke and Sasseville have thoughtfully and imaginatively played with the theme of water and the relationships between leisure and competition, nature and urbanity. We congratulate these Canadian artists on their important contribution to Surrey’s public art collection.”

“The city is proud to welcome such an internationally significant site-specific artwork for this world-class aquatic centre. I expect these sculptures will become an iconic part of the South Surrey landscape, and become a destination in their own right,” said Jim Adams, co-chair of the Public Art Advisory Committee.

Themes of movement, transition, and journey inspired Cooke and Sasseville.

As their title suggests, Circulation refers to the movement of water “following a course”: Water circulating in the environment, water circulating in the building’s pipes, and water (blood) circulating in the body.

The artists stated: “Among the strongest symbolic features of the project, we find a kind of symbiosis between the cycle of water and that of the human body’s fluids referring to both the purpose of the building and the human relation with water as an essential element of life.”

The artwork’s pipes are an extension of the movement of water inside the building and visually connect the building’s main entrance from the parking lot with the view from the street.

The red and blue colour scheme signifies both hot and cold water, as well the anatomy of the human vascular system (oxygenated and de-oxygenated blood veins).

For more information about the Surrey Public Art Program, visit surrey.ca/publicart

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