Public Art with a Delightful New Twist – Music-Making Seating

Tualatin Valley Creates (TVC), Washington County, Oregon’s leading arts service organization is working to grow the region’s public art portfolio with a delightful new twist – music-making seating. Thanks to the support of County Commissioners Rogers, Willey, Schouten, Harrington and Treece, TVC was awarded capital funds in early 2020 to commission four new works in what is being called a “Musical Benches Public Art Collection”. TVC worked closely with regional stakeholders including Beaverton Downtown Association, Tigard Downtown Alliance, Forest Grove Art Commission, and Ackerly at Timberland to develop the scope of this collection.

The premise behind the new works are that they are “functional art” that is dynamic, unique, engaging and, as the title suggests, people can sit on them. The RFP closed on July 15th and received 33 design submissions by 15 artists. The review panel, comprised of representatives from the four districts where the art work will be installed (Beaverton, Tigard, Forest Grove, Cedar Mill) paid special attention to each submission and the manner in which the bench would actually be “played” with; whether plunked, bonked, and/or cranked, the panelists remarked that they wanted each design to be clearly distinct from others.

TVC is excited to announce that selected Oregon-based artists Jill Torberson, Ben Dye, Jud Turner and Matt Burney will be fabricating their individual designs over the coming weeks. Installations of the new artwork, including pictures and physical locations will be announced on TVC’s website and through social media @tvcreates. Contact Tualatin Valley Creates at 503-567-1713 or to learn more.

Winning design by Jud Turner, “Wishing Bench” to be installed in downtown Forest Grove.
Winning design by Ben Dye, “Tuned Tube Bench” to be installed in Cedar Mill.