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Military, flamingos and fishing among themes of new UNF sculpture park installation

The University of North Florida’s sculpture program installed five new student-created sculptures at UNF’s Seaside Sculpture Park at Jacksonville Beach today. This is the fifth art installation by UNF undergraduate sculpture students at the Sculpture Park since it opened in 2016. The sculptures from the previous installation will be up for auction in February. 

Learn more about the impressive student-created sculptures installed today:  

Propulsion sculpture installation“Propulsion" by Dustin Sims - This kinetic piece explores the relationship between a squid’s movements through the water and the similarity with modern-day underwater machines. The sculpture is powered by wind and wired for UV light to represent the iridescent-like qualities some squids possess. Most of Sims’s work revolves around his fascination with the amazing attributes of animals through evolution and the technology humankind has developed to accomplish the same. 
Catfish Windmill sculpture installation





“Catfish Windmill” by Victoria Pontieri - The "Catfish Windmill" was inspired by the Floridian fishing culture and the importance of catfish to local and global food webs. The concepts of air and sea are merged, while the color scheme is a nod to the US Military, particularly the Coast Guard. 
Military in Memoriam sculpture installation




“Military in Memoriam” by Ethan Harmon - The inspiration behind “Military in Memoriam” is to pay homage to the sacrifices the men and women who have served in the US military have made since WWII. Each tag shows the total number of active-duty service members and combat-related deaths in each branch to bring more to light the number of people who have given their lives for what they believe in. 



Flamingosis sculpture installation“Flamingosis” by Shisam Barrios - The inspiration for "Flamingosis" came from many places. The first was the icon of the flamingo and its association with Florida as a sign of its marketing. Secondly, was a story about how the state had to bring more flamingos in from Mexico to repopulate after the species had been wiped out by overhunting. Barrios created the monument to represent an icon with an unknown history. 






Vitruvian Woman sculpture installation“Vitruvian Woman” by Patricia Muniz - The “Vitruvian Woman” challenges traditional notions of female representation in art. This piece celebrates the strength and resilience of women, emphasizing their diverse and multifaceted roles in society. 


The UNF Seaside Sculpture Park project highlights exceptional work by undergraduate students and kickstarted a remarkable public art program that has since expanded to other areas of Jacksonville. The park's triumph has generated enthusiasm in other neighborhoods, which now recognize the value of large sculptures in defining and unifying a community, fostering a “museum without walls" public art experience for the community to enjoy.  


This competitive process is transformative for students. Each student is required to present to a committee made up of UNF faculty, community members and the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville with small models of sculpture ideas. Once selected, students are awarded scholarships to fabricate and install their pieces as large-scale outdoor works. This unique and ambitious project is supported by MountainStar Capital, the Lazzara Family Foundation and the City of Jacksonville Beach.