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Arts and Entertainment

Akron Art Museum sculpture garden planned
Present day staff parking lot to be excavated and enclosed.

Mark Urycki
Rick and Alita Rogers explain their gift to build a new sculpture garden at the Akron Art Museum. Rick is the president of the B.W. Rogers Co. and Alita is the chairman.
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The Akron Art Museum announced this afternoon (Friday) that it will build an outdoor sculpture garden.   The museum has been without such a space since it opened its new building five years ago.   WKSU’s Mark Urycki reports the garden comes from donations from patrons.

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Retiring Akron Art Museum Director Mitchell Kahan thinks surface parking lots in downtowns are a waste of space.  He’s not the only one.

Rick and Alita Rogers of Akron have made a what officials call a seven-figure donation to turn the museum’s staff parking lot into an enclosed sculpture garden.  Rick Rogers says he remembers the space before the new building was constructed. 

“The old Meyers Sculpture Garden was an enclosed, peaceful, and contemplative space where outdoor events were held in the Summer months.  And we’ve missed  that element.  So this projects fulfills the plan for the next exciting step in the museum’s growth.”

The new garden will be named after Rogers’ parents, Bruce and Suzanne Rogers.  Known around Akron as Bud and Susie, they are longtime friends of the museum.

Kahan says the space will not only hold outdoor art, but will also be a venue for concerts including the popular Downtown at Dusk series in the summer.

Kahan is retiring January 2nd.  The museum’s interim director will be Chief Curator Janice Driesbach

Listener Comments:

In a way, I was disappointed the garden wasn't named in part after Mitch...He and chris have a love of plants like few others...How about a topiary in his honor...not surewhat animal or item he would like, but that would be great idea...

Thanks and keep up the good work...

Posted by: Greg Cznadel (Cleveland) on December 22, 2012 12:12PM
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