Art for Sight - Ski for Light
Olav Pedersen, Richard Dahl (my son, traveling companion and helper), Bill Osmundsen
The Sculpture was finally set in place at the Park in Frisco, Colorado. Richard and I had transported the Bronze Skiers from our home and my Studio-Foundry in New Hampshire to Proctor VT. where I had Marble Gifts cut tracts (for cross country skiing) in the top of this 5,500 lb. block of Vermont Marble.
Loading it in a rental truck we headed West for Colorado. And what an event that was in it's own right. We lost time at the quarry and cutting the tracks and I drove almost non-stop, only sleeping sitting up in the cab. The Artwork needed to be installed and ready for a dedication ceremony that had been scheduled for months. People came from all over the US some from Norway. We made it.
Creative Sculptor and Bronze Founder, Bill Osmundsen does some last minute finishing on the Bronze Casting of his Ski for Light Sculpture. The project had begun 18 years before the final Commission from The Frisco Art Council.
In 1979, Osmundsen had already introduced his Bronzes from the Sea, collection at New York's Rockefeller Center and during Norway's Operation Sail 1978, with David-Andersen A/S in Oslo. A Skiing Magazine which he perused led him to question a young Norwegian Diplomat, Einar Berg about this event called 'Ski for Light'. "How could one ski when blind'. Osmundsen related to Einar Berg. "Well, why don't you come to the next Ski event in Squaw Valley, it will be in about two weeks, Bill." And so, that event, in which Bill participated as a guide and meeting up with Olav Pedersen, the founder of the event in the USA, led to discussions of making a monument to the event.
Also at the event was Harald Midttun who was Consul General from Norway to Houston, Texas.
"Houston", Consul General Midttun explained would feature Norway as an important trading partner for Houston and so they would hold the Norway Festival 1980 for two months.
Bill was invited to exhibit his Bronzes from the Sea during the events.
Bill also introduced a large Braille Plaque which he had designed showing the two skiers, which were to be sculpted. The 4 ft. x 5 ft acrylic plaque was silk-screened with different textures, for varied colors. A Braille code and written signage explained to both the sighted and the blind.
It was introduced as 'Art for Sight'.
The wax model for the 'Skiers' was completed after the exhibitions in Houston and became a feature story for the Norway Times (Nordisk Tidende) a Norwegian-American Paper Published in Brooklyn.
The girl skier, portrayed as the guide was completed first and cast into fibre glass. This was first exhibited at Rockefeller Center, in the Fifth Avenue Windows of Scandinavian Airlines SAS. When the blind male skier was completed in fibre glass they both were flown out to Colorado and the Breckenridge 10th Anniversary Ski for Light event.
Another 12 years passed when the Artist received a call from Frisco, Colorado. It was the Frisco Art Council and they had raised the money to cast the Skiers. Osmundsen and a few helpers would spend the next six months or more casting the skiers in about 8-10 sections each and welding them together.
'ART FOR SIGHT - SKI FOR LIGHT' Bronze on Marble (c) Wm Barth Osmundsen, Sculptor/Founder
Commissioned by The Frisco Art Council 1997
Place in Honor of Olav Pedersen, known as the 'Father of Ski for Light'
Dedicated on Olav' 80th year at the site
Location a Park in Frisco, CO Located at Main St., & Summit Boulevard