The Feather: Public Art at Presque Isle
“The feather is a vehicle to the true art – Nature, the view.”
The Feather is a work of sculpture at Presque Isle State Park commissioned by the Erie Art Museum and designed by environmental artist Angelo Ciotti. On June 27, 2010, a tornado swept across the neck of the peninsula and destroyed the original structure, along with the trees around and among which it was designed and built. Thanks to the generosity of numerous donors, led by the Sweny Family and Mary and Howard Lincoln, The Feather was rebuilt on its original footings beginning March 22, 2012 and was rededicated on May 17, 2012.
The shape of the sculpture was inspired by a single white feather which Ciotti observed at the location site. The work invites visitors to stroll up a feather-shaped 100’ wooden deck that overlooks a unique wetland on Presque Isle Bay, and to relax and experience nature.
The Feather was commissioned as a functional piece of art by the Erie Art Museum in collaboration with the Public Art Committee, with the cooperation of the Presque Isle Advisory Board and Pennsylvania State Parks. The project was designed by Pittsburgh-based artist Angelo Ciotti, and dedicated in the spring of 1998. The wooden ramp was constructed on a projection of land, known as Leo’s Landing, overlooking a pond and Presque Isle Bay beyond. The project enabled visitors to view a unique and environmentally sensitive natural area of the park without intruding into it.
Major contributors to the project include The Sweny Family, The Erie Community Foundation, the County of Erie, Crowner/King Architects, Schick Matts Corp., Urban Engineers, Dahlkemper Landscape Architects & Contractors, Drs. Reichel & Reichel P.C., Mazza Wineries, Lignitech, David M. Laird and Associates, The Vicary Foundation, GPU Energy, Health South, Eat’n Park, Blue Cross of Western Pennsylvania, Marketplace Grill, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, Hamot Medical Center, Liberty Iron Metal, Lowry Photography, Al Marschke, PNC Bank, and Times Publishing Company.
Thanks also to those who worked on the installations of the Feather, including Dan Kerchansky, Vlado Benden, Gene Brenning, Richard Brown, Frank Fratus, Kim Hanrahan, Mike Jefferys, Kevin Molloy, Daryl Panko, John St. George, Glen Sementelli, Dan Spires, John Vanco and Dave Watkins. Special thanks to the students at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. The Public Art Committee was Richard Reichel II, co-chairman, Dan Dahlkemper, Jody Farrell, Mary Hoenes, Judy Kubeja, Lisa Louis, Bob Lowry, Nan Means, Kim Peden, Dave Skellie, Jeff Spaulding, and John Vanco, co-chairman.