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With $20K grant, art installation at Dilworth Park fountain inches forward

‘Pulse’ was originally commissioned in 2009

A $20,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts has been awarded to a public art installation planned for Dilworth Park.
Courtesy of Shutterstock

Philly has enjoyed the impressive success of Dilworth Park in front of City Hall since its debut in 2014, but the final piece to the puzzle, an art installation, still remains.

Pulse, a public art installation involving the now iconic Dilworth Park fountain, has been MIA for years now, as Center City District continues to drum up the money needed for the installation. But with some fresh funds, the long-awaited art installation can move forward.

The Center City District announced today that the NEA has awarded the organization $20,000 to fund the installation of Pulse, the art installation designed by sculptor Janet Echelman.

Pulse was one of 1,029 grants that the NEA awarded throughout the country.

Rendering by OLIN

The piece was commissioned in 2009, and the infrastructure for it was already put in place during construction of the 11,160-square-foot fountain. The artwork will use colorful lights and mist to trace the subway lines that run below Dilworth Park.

But the CCD has spent the past few years trying to drum up funding to make the proposed art installation become a reality. Although the cost of the installation has not been disclosed, the CCD’s website states that the fountain and naming rights are $4 million.

The CCD explained in a statement that it has been setting aside money to match the private donations that have already been raised for the art installation. It plans to launch the first phase of Pulse in 2018.

Here a video of the proposed art installation in action.

The $20,000 for Pulse is just one of a long list of cultural institutions in Philly that were awarded a grant from the NEA this year. Here’s the full list.