26 January 2016

Mythic Source by Ned Smyth

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Mythic Source is a part of a larger piece of art. Titled separately and positioned apart, they are two companion pieces for one sculpture.

image from Google Earth

From the Google Earth image you can see Mythic Source right along the Allegheny River, in the middle of the North Shore Trail. Across the grass and sitting up above it, is Piazza Lavoro, the second part of this artwork.

Mythic Source hasn't held up as well as Piazza Lavoro. The mosaic figures are broken and pieces are missing. Although hundreds of people walk, run or ride across this artwork on a daily basis I've never noticed anyone stopping to look at it. The pavement is broken and crumbling. In 2013 we thought renovations were to begin here, but it didn't happen. Several renovations on this 30 plus year old sculpture park are scheduled, but so far the only improvements we've observed are on the fishing dock. Eventually this sculpture is supposed to be moved and restored.

The accompanying plaque for this says:

On the lower level, "Mythic Source" refers to life's aquatic origins and the sustaining powers of the waters."

UPDATE: In 2016 these two sculptures were repaired and slightly redesigned. Instead of just repairing the ground mosaic of Mythic Source, it was completely removed and relocated to Piazza Lavorno. Now at the top of the hill in Allegheny Landing, any flooding along the river should not affect it. It also removed it from being subjected to the larger volume of foot and bike traffic that travels past Mythic Source all day.

See photos of the repaired mosaics in the Piazza Lavoro entry.

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