Recent Projects

Recycled Art Birdhouses
SKA Academy
The students of SKA Academy created beautiful Duluth-inspired birdhouses and wind spirals out of recycled materials. Artists ranged from kindergarten through high school students. SKA students, parents and staff presented the pieces at the September DPAC meeting before hanging the temporary installation for the month of October.

Main Street Wall Project
With the new Main Street streetscape came new, concrete retaining walls. These temporary graphics create interest in the space, giving the beautiful vines planted along the sidewalk a chance to grow up the walls. 

Art Week 2016 Community Mural Project
Special Thanks to those who participated!
Members of the Duluth community were notified via social media of the pop-up mural event in downtown Duluth during the City's 2016 Art Week. The result is spectacular! We hope to provide more opportunities for community-art-creations in the future.
Check it out for yourself: the mural is located in the parking lot behind the Festival Center (off of Hill Street). 

The City of Duluth’s Gateway Art Piece “Ascension”
Sponsored by AGCO Corporation

Ascension Photo

Duluth and AGCO Corporation are proud to introduce the City's New Gateway Art Piece "Ascension." The sculpture is located at the roundabout on McClure Bridge Road. The City is thrilled to have a third piece of permanent public art. "It's really about bringing prosperity and values of worth as well as patriotism to the City of Duluth," said Artist Michael Dillon.

The artwork displays Duluth's rich history as a strong & humble farming community and continues its legacy by reaping and harvesting the fruits of our labors through the strength and perseverance embodied in our community today. Reflecting the Spirit of Duluth, Dillon's design lifts the labors of our past, sowing seeds of opportunity for today & carrying Duluth to greater heights for tomorrow. Michael says, “In developing a public artwork for the citizens of Duluth, and to honor its generous donor AGCO, my goal was to center the theme to a design that speaks to Duluth’s history as a farming community.”  The artwork is also a symbol that “ascends” and reflects this community’s strong values of today and inspiring vision for tomorrowAGCO is a mirror of this spirit.  As a vital member of Duluth’s community, this Fortune 200 Company has industriously transformed world agriculture through advancing today’s and tomorrow’s version of the plow.­­­

 "In a changing environment, this piece of art represents stability and sustainability here in Duluth," said Mayor Nancy Harris. This initial site-specific project is one of many public art pieces the City hopes to commission to enhance the beauty and culture of Duluth and the surrounding areas. The City has formed the Duluth Public Art Commission (DPAC) to further Duluth’s mission of cultivating the arts.

About the Artist:

Creating sculpture for public spaces is Michael Dillon's passion. As an artist/blacksmith living and working in North Georgia, he has more than 20 years' experience creating both functional and sculptural works of art. Michael builds hand forged stair railings, gates, sculpture and furniture for distinguished homes in Atlanta, and abroad. During the past 5 years, Michael has expanded his career into the public art arena, creating several large¬-scale sculptures. Michael finds joy in the balance of creating both architectural ironwork and distinctive sculptures. His peers have long recognized his work, and this past year he received the acclaimed Phillip Trammel Shutze award for craftsmanship in classical architecture. Michael's public work is modern, and narrative. He researches each community and tells a story incorporating their past, present, and hopes for the future.

About AGCO Corporation:

The generous donation for this initial project is from AGCO Corporation (, a leading global manufacturer of agricultural equipment and Fortune 200 Company, whose corporate headquarters is located in Duluth. AGCO distributes their products in more than 140 countries worldwide and is a publicly traded company with additional locations in Europe, South America, Africa and Asia Pacific. "It is important to AGCO to be good citizens in the communities where we and our customers operate. We are proud to support the city that has been our home for almost 20 years," said Martin Richenhagen, Chairman, President, and CEO of AGCO.
Description of Landscaping: Designed to complement and emphasize the sculpture’s message, the landscape has been designed as a beautiful, sustainable work of art itself. Raised “Furrows”, composed of boulders, stones, raised mounds of dirt, and mulch surrounds the front of the sculpture, as if being perpetually plowed. Native grasses are tucked in pockets throughout the furrows and boulder groupings, ensuring attractive color is present in the space year-round, thus providing an unconventional landscape to emphasize the message found within the piece. The furrows transition to a manicured, colorful garden on the sides and rear of the installation. This transition echoes Duluth’s economic, and social growth over time. 

ArtsTalk: Ascension (around 14 min mark) from TVgwinnett on Vimeo.

Video of Ascension Installation
"Video of some of the Pieces of the Sculpture
Video of Michael Dillon at his shop, Dillon Forge
Call to Artists
Gateway Art Project Committee Bios

Agendas & Minutes