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Grammy-Winning Artist: Herb Alpert's 'Spirit Totems' Unveiling in New York's Dante Park Come March

By Ian Holubiak i.holubiak@classicalite.com on Jan 14, 2014 09:45 PM EST

There is something tremendous about being an artist. The idea of "art"--as a figurative umbrella--can be posited into music, onto canvas or sculpted 16 feet above one's head.

And yet, it's that lattermost idea which will soon be postulated by eight-time Grammy winner Herb Alpert, who has a new collection of sculptures set to unveil in New York City's Dante Park at West 64th Street.

Alpert's exhibition is called "Spirit Totems," featuring three tall, black bronze totems: Grace 2006, which stands at 15 feet, 8 inches, Freedom 2011 (16 foot 9) and Gratitude 2009...at a whopping 17 feet and 2 inches.

The three totems, which each can take as long as three months for Alpert to complete, are being driven to New York from Malibu, Calif.

The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation's "Art in the Parks" program has become a breeding ground for local art and will play a fitting venue for large-scale work like Alpert's.

Of course, Herb Alpert is best known as a trumpeter, as well as co-founding A&M records. And as he tells it, his affinity for jazz acted as a major influence for his newest pieces.

"I spent time looking all over New York City for the ideal place for the Spirit Totems," Mr. Alpert said in a statement. "I fell in love with Dante Park because it is an open thoroughfare where the sculptures are visible with a connection to Jazz at Lincoln Center."

Alpert says his sculptures were inspired by totem poles of indigenous African tribes, claiming, too, that improvisation contributed equally to the works' final form.

"Spirit Totems" will be installed on March 1; all are invited to visit the exhibit for free.

In the meantime, here's one from Herb Alpert's Tijuana Brass--just one of many.

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TagsHerb Alpert, New York City, Grammys, Art in the Park, Jazz at Lincoln Center