Visual artist Jeff Whipple, who works out of MetaCusp Studios in Riverside, has been creating public art for decades. “I’ve enjoyed many similar projects around the country where casts of the same object were provided to artists for their interpretation,” he says. “Placing the objects in various locations creates a kind of Easter egg hunt for art. People have become disconcertingly passive about art, so this is a clever way to engage them physically and mentally.” Whipple’s obelisk, titled The Life and Times of Our Lifetimes, depicts paintings of animals saying phrases like “Just Get Over It!” and “I’m Chicken of Normal!” “The themes of compassion are clearly things we all learned ad nauseam in kindergarten and in countless heavy-handed-after-school-specials on TV,” Whipple explains. “It just seemed absurd to make an equally ‘like duh’ image about how people should be nice to each other.”
Whipple’s work will be placed at the Government House across the street from Plaza de la Constitución, the site of the original Spanish obelisk.