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East Aldine to get sculpture by famed Artist

In the artist’s studio East Aldine District Art Committee chairman Carlos Silva, left, views the statue of John F. Kennedy that will be erected in the esplanade of JFK Boulevard at Aldine Bender. At the right is the sculptor, David Adickes. He is well known in the art world for his series of sculptures of presidents’ heads, which can be seen from I-45 Southbound near his downtown studio. Adickes is also best known for the 67’ tall statue of Sam Houston which sits along the I-45 highway in Huntsville.

EAST ALDINE – A huge bust statue of the late president John F. Kennedy may soon mark the northern edge of the District, and greet travelers arriving from Intercontinental Airport.

The Art Committee of the East Aldine District has recommended to the board the purchase and installation of a unique statue of JFK, sculpted by famed artist David Adickes. Adickes is known for the towering statue of Texas hero Sam Houston, which sits along the highway I-45 in Huntsville.

The statue would be located in the median between the northbound and southbound lanes of JFK Boulevard, at the intersection with Aldine Bender.

An artist’s constructed photo shows how the JFK Statue will look as it is installed on a base pedestal in the median or esplanade of JFK Boulevard at Aldine Bender.In this photo, Aldine Bender runs left to right, and JFK Boulevard runs toward and away from the camera. The Statue will serve as a welcome to travelers arriving from the airport toward the city, and also as an introduction to the East Aldine District.

According to Silva, the art committee has a number of projects that would bring public art to East Aldine. These include the Big Walls Big Dreams mural recently painted on the wall at the High Meadows library, Mini Murals on utility boxes, the JFK statue, and a gigantic mural scheduled for the lobby wall of the new East Aldine District office building, that would tell the story graphically of the history of the Aldine Area.

The EAMD board voted to proceed with engineering work required for the JFK statue. CobbFendley was awarded a contract for $40,000, and the District plans to purchase the statue for $25,000. Additional funds would be required for the installation work.

The JFK statue proposal has received wide acclaim, bringing high quality art to the district which will enhance our reputation city-wide. Executive Director David Hawes commented that in 20 years, the District has spent $60 million for water and sewer improvements, and public safety, so “it is time to improve the appearance in the District by spending these dollars.” The introduction of an art program is consistent with the original intent to enhance the quality of life in the district.

Born 1927 in Huntsville, Texas, David Adickes earned his undergraduate degree in physics and mathematics from Sam Houston State College (now University). The summer after graduation, he attended the Kansas City Art Institute and realized that art was what he really wanted to do. Adickes used his G.I. Bill to study painting in Paris with the modern master, Fernand Leger. He returned to Houston and began painting full-time.

In 1983, he was commissioned to make his first monumental sculpture, Virtuoso, which now resides at the Lyric Center in downtown Houston. Adickes also created the 76-foot tall figure of Sam Houston that stands on Interstate 45 just south of Huntsville.

He is known for the large statues he sculpts. He sculpted a 67-foot replica of Sam Houston for the city of Huntsville, Texas. In Lead, South Dakota, Adickes created 43 enormousness busts of each American president for display at an educational museum.

His workshop in Houston is open to the public and features many of his most outstanding works. Not intended to be a destination, the workshop/gallery has turned into a destination, an often surprising site where one can see something out of the ordinary in the middle of East Aldine to get sculpture by famed Artist an industrial part of Houston, Texas. Giant heads will occasionally sit in the parking lot and huge sculptures of the Beatles and former President Bush can be seen from the street. Occasionally one will find Adickes working in the shop, with his six employees, slowly crafting ever more extravagant work.

Selected Public Collections

Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas

Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas

Fort Worth Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas

James A. Michener Art Foundation, Doleystown, Pennsylvania

Longview Art Association, Longview, Texas

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas

Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Witte Museum of Art, San Antonio, Texas

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