Saturday, May 21, 2011

Count me among the unscrubbed Plebian souls who don't care for it

Yeah, yeah. I know it was money that could only be used for art and not for museum funds. I still think it's ironic that the amounts were precisely the same...

Here's my KMUW commentary on the Waterwalk sculpture or read it below.

Man, talk about irony… there’s been enough irony in the air lately here in Wichita that they should be running crawls across the bottom of our TV screens: “Warning! Heavy irony in Wichita area atmosphere. Please wear protective head gear especially when in the vicinity of the Wichita City Hall.”

By now, everyone knows about the Wichita City Council’s recent approval of $350,000 to have an abstract sculpture by renowned New York artist Albert Paley erected at WaterWalk. The 38-foot-tall piece is supposed to be a tribute to—among other things—Wichita’s aviation heritage. Yeah. That’s what they said. Our aviation heritage.

This comes less than a year after our Kansas Aviation Museum asked the city for financial help with their desperately needed capital improvement project. The city turned them down. The cost of the Museum’s project: $350,000. The exact amount which the city council is willing to spend on the sculpture which is a tribute to our aviation heritage. That, my friends, is what you call irony.

Why is the Council more interested in symbolism than substance? This sculpture is a symbol of our aviation heritage. The Kansas Aviation Museum is a substantial upholder and steward of that heritage. Our city’s tepid support of this important institution is, as a recent letter writer in the Wichita Eagle pointed out, embarrassing.

The Kansas Aviation Museum cannot even afford to heat and cool most of its building. And our city leaders are paying $350,000 for a sculptural tribute to our aviation heritage? Breathtakingly ironic. They should just embrace its irony and erect a giant iron butterfly. Or, better yet, a led zeppelin. Or… no! I’ve got it! How about a lead balloon?


Dan R. Rouser said...

Oh that Albert Paley was a mighty qualified guy
drew up a sculpture that soared thru the sky

But along came R. Crowson with a really mean streak
ripped up that Paley man all the way down main street

We've always known Richard as a pretty nice fellow
And until now, we had hardly ever heard him bellow

He saved that stuff for the T party and Rush Limbaugh.
But then he saw a chance to make people hee and haw

So he picked up his pen and paper, but not his banjo
and he broadcast on that radio that Paley had to go.

Now his facts and his history were both just a bit light,
but his point was made and Paley now seemed a fright

So this is just another story from Wichita and Kansas.
In this one, the good guys are made to suffer some sass

We know that is not unusual in these here parts.
The only thing strange is who threw those darts.

So add up those astras and don't count the per asperas,
cause at this rate, we'll all soon be in a cultural diaspora.

Richard said...

"make people hee and haw"

Well, duh, Dan...I am a banjo player. Hee Haw is what it's all about!

Nice work. You should set it to music!

I know an accordion player who works cheap.