Nessie on the Grand

By Lindsay Hedgecock

            After centuries searching for the Loch Ness monster the creature was sighted in the Grand River beneath the pedestrian bridge in Grand Rapids, Mi.

            Nessie, a 60-foot, 3,000-pound sculpture of the Loch Ness monster made its debut in the Grand River during the ArtPrize festival from September 27 through October 10. Grand Rapids residence could hear the roar of Nessie with her lighted red eyes glowing at night from across town.

            The ArtPrize had 1,262 entries that included paintings, sculptures and other forms of art in downtown Grand Rapids.  The DeVos family made large contributions to host this event in Grand Rapids.

            Nessie was created over a six year period by Airline Aluminum Group or AAG.  AAG consists of Animation Designer Thomas Birks, Gallery Owner Richard App, Industrial Designers David Valdisseri and Joachim Jensen, along with a group of artists and designers.

            Nessie placed sixth in the top ten winners of ArtPrize 2009 winning $7,000.

            I remember sitting with my family in T.G.I. Fridays after spending hours walking around Grand Rapids on a Saturday afternoon. Our waiter talked to us about his own experiences walking home after work while listening to Nessie roar at 2 a.m.   

            Nessie was removed from the Grand River and placed at the John Ball Zoo shortly after the contest was done. She resided there until the zoo closed Monday where she will be put in storage for the winter.  Due to costs of storing Nessie, AAG put her up for auction.  The group hopes to that she remains in Grand Rapids.      

Top Ten Winners:

Open Water no.24
Ran Ortner

1st place

Imagine That!
Tracy Van Duinen

2nd Place

 

Portraits
Eric Daigh

3rd Place

 

The Grand Dance
David Lubbers

4th Place

Moose
Bill Secunda

5th Place

Nessie on the Grand
Nessie Project

6th Place

Field of Reeds
John Douglas Powers

7th Place

The The Furniture City Sets the Table for the World of Art

Sarah Grant

8th Place

Ecstasy of The Scarlet Empress

Jason Hackenwerth

9th Place

winddancer 2
Michael Westra

10th Place

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