Pipefusion donates public art installation in honour of its 35th anniversary

3
Share on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page

With files from Tamara de la Vega

Huntsville has been good to Jan Nyquist and his company, Pipefusion. He believes in giving back and does so frequently, but this year, in honour of the company’s 35th anniversary, he wanted to do something a little different, something lasting.

Nyquist asked the Town, ‘what do you need?’ Their reply: public art that wasn’t just interesting to look at but that also incorporated Pipefusion’s materials, processes and skills as a means of showcasing them.

So he and company Vice President Libby Boucher put the challenge out to their employees – what would they want this piece of art to look like? A sketch that came back intrigued them and they engaged local artist Beverley Hawksley to provide guidance and a second round of sketches.

The result is what Nyquist calls “industrial art with a historical theme.”

An artistic rendering of Pipe Man. One on side will be the likeness of Tom Thomson (left), on the other waves representing Pipefusion's 35 years

An artistic rendering of Pipe Man. One on side will be the likeness of Tom Thomson (left), on the other waves representing Pipefusion’s 35 years

Huntsville, meet Pipe Man

The sculpture is a rendering of Tom Thomson, who was always known to have a pipe in hand, made from high-density polyethylene pipe (HDPE), the material the company works with. “We were drawn to that synergy of pipe and pipe,” says Boucher.

On the flip side of the sculpture will be a graphic representation of NyDock’s logo with one ripple for each of Pipefusion’s 35 years of business.

Both images will be die-cut into the black HDPE material and a white plate will be placed behind to make them more visible. At night, internal solar lights will illuminate the sculpture from within.

Pipefusion technologists used their dock-building knowledge – NyDock is a division of the company – to design a floating structure that will hide completely under the water so that Pipe Man appears to have risen out of the river unaided. It will float in the Muskoka River to the north of the swing bridge and adjacent to the town docks.

Because it’s a floating structure, it will leave the riverbed largely untouched save for an anchor to keep it from drifting. Navigation lights will ensure boaters know it’s there. And because it uses the same freeze-in-ice materials NyDock uses to build docks, it can be left in place all winter. The company will maintain it so there will be no cost to taxpayers.

Pipe Man (green marker) will be installed in the Muskoka River to the north of the swing bridge and adjacent to the town docks

Pipe Man (green marker) will be installed in the Muskoka River to the north of the swing bridge and adjacent to the town docks

Standing 18 feet tall, Pipe Man will be an impressive sight. One that will last hundreds of years, says Nyquist.

“It’s a pay it forward,” says Boucher. “The community has given back to (Jan), providing a group of employees that are very loyal and dedicated, as well as customers that have provided the avenue to expand our dock business in our region, and, of course, our local supplier, Uponor.”

If all goes to plan, the company will unveil the sculpture at their 35th anniversary celebration on June 9, with a public unveiling to occur on Friday, July 8, the kickoff to the 100-year celebrations of the anniversary of Tom Thomson’s death in 2017.

Nyquist and Boucher presented the design to Council on Tuesday night (May 24). Teri Souter, the Town’s Manager of Arts, Culture and Heritage, said that Pipe Man “will be a community asset which may be leveraged for the (planned) Tom Thomson 100th and Canada’s 150th events and activities in 2017.”

Libby Boucher and Jan Nyquist presented Pipe Man to Town Council on May 24

Libby Boucher and Jan Nyquist presented Pipe Man to Town Council on May 24

Council thanked Nyquist for the donation and approved the installation pending a required navigable waterways permit, which Boucher said she did not think would present a problem. Huntsville Mayor Scott Aitchison thanked Nyquist for the donation and congratulated him on his company’s anniversary.

Don’t miss out on Doppler! Sign up for our free, twice-weekly newsletter here.

print

3 Comments

  1. TO Jan Nyquist, Libby Boucher, the employees of Pipefusion, and Huntsville Town Council ::::

    What a wonderful idea !

    Thank you Mr. Nyquist et al., for your thoughtful and generous contribution to the Town of Huntsville. I believe it will become a landmark, and display a very dramatic night image in this busy section of the town.

    To commemorate the anniversaries of your 35th, Tom Thomson’s 100th and Canada’s 150th, in 2017, is so fitting for the period in time. To correlate the history (Tom Thomson) and today’s innovative technology,(Pipefusion) with pipes, is unique.

    I commend you for asking your employees for their input on this project. It shows you have a good connection and respect their opinions. That is what makes a business remain strong for 35 years.

    You said, in this article, that you put the concept forward to your employees for ideas, … “and a sketch came back that intrigued you”…… I think it would be very nice if the person or persons who gave you the sketch got an “honorable mention”. After all, that is the seed that grew,… from an idea … to a reality.

    Again, thank you and congratulations!

Leave a reply below. Comments without both first & last name will not be published. Your email address is required for validation but will not be publicly visible.