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Soy Pod, Oregon's newest statue, to be installed on Nov. 2

Published: Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013 11:40 a.m. CDT

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“It gives me great pleasure to see that my mother’s artistic talents have been inherited by my daughter,” said artist Pamela Lee, whose artwork “Soy Pod” was chosen as the latest installment of the Community Arts Legacy (CAL) in Oregon.

Her sculpture “Soy Pod” is the newest art piece added to the Oregon Public Library’s art collection and the ninth installment in an aggressive project by CAL to add 10 sculptures in 10 years to the art rich Oregon community.

The artwork will be installed on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 4 p.m. at location on the library lot located just west of the post office on Ill. 64 in Oregon. The community is invited to the dedication.

“The inspiration for 'Soy Pod' came from living in homes that were surrounded by farms," said Lee. “Corn and soybean fields and farm animals have almost always been part of the neighborhoods I’ve lived in.”

Lee participated in the Field Arts Project and her sculpture was chosen as the 2013 installment of CAL’s project to add 10 sculptures in 10 years to Oregon. 

“When we started the CAL with the goal of erecting 10 sculptures in the Oregon area we had no idea how that would go.  It is through the support of the Oregon community that we are able to place the 9th out of 10 sculptures this year and look forward to completion of the 10th.” said Jeff Adams owner of InBronze Foundry, Mt. Morris, who makes each of the sculptures after they are chosen for the project.

“When I was deciding on my subject for the competition, I wanted to include soybeans as part of the design,” said Lee. “I wanted the design to reflect that a simple pod of beans has a large impact.  It is in many of our food products and the feed of our animals as well.”

The artist, Lee, grew up in the rural edges of the Chicago suburbs and has lived in Illinois all of her life. 

She has been privileged to have as instructors, mentors and friends many great artists including Mary Block and Jan Poklop. 

She works in many mediums including terracotta, bronze, resin, painting in watermedia, pastels, oils and mixed media. 

Her style is quite diverse ranging from abstract to representational. 

“I prefer to stretch my creativity rather than limit it,” said Lee.

Lee’s main studio is in Highland Park, and she has a small studio on her farm in Grayslake. She is also a part of “The Artists at 3150.”  This is a community of artists in the same building that have combined their efforts as artists and invite the public to open studio events during the year.

Lee currently has a sculpture titled “You” in the Recent Works exhibition at Wright Gallery in Grayslake and her newest work includes her “Rain” series which is an experimental sculpture project.  Visit her website at www.pamelaleestudio.com to view her work.

“We are very fortunate as a library to be able to also serve as an art gallery for the Oregon Community,” said Marsha Zaccone, Oregon Public Library Director.

“This is our second piece from the CAL collection and we could not be happier,” said Scott Stephens, President of the Oregon Library Board of Trustees. “ Lee is a talented artist and “Soy Pod” is a wonderful addition to our collection and to our community.”

The first CAL sculpture, “From the Waters Comes My Bounty” by Ray Kobald, was placed at Kiwanis Park in 2005. It was later relocated across the Rock River to Oregon Park East.

Other CAL sculptures are 2006 "Agriculture, Mother of Civilization" by David Seagraves at the Ogle County Judicial Center, 2007 "Cornball" by Howard Russo at the Oregon Coliseum, 2008 "The Bountiful Bench" by Christina Murphy at the Oregon Public Library, 2009 "Solar Reef" by Andrew Langoussis at Oregon Park West, and 2010 "Making Hay" by Daniel Ingebrightson at Stillman Bank, Oregon, 2011 Harvest Hunter by Matthew Donovan at Nash Recreation Center, 2012 "Working the Land" by Robert Pulley at the Oregon Park District's Community Garden on 10th Street.

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