Sunday, November 16, 2014

25th Annual Sculpture Space, CHAIRity Art Auction 2014

Featuring Hubbell Galvanizing’s Rick Mulvihill

By: Ali Semeraro

This year’s Sculpture Space Charity Auction was held Saturday, October 25th to benefit the Sculpture Space organization and its “International Artists in Residence Program” of Utica, NY. For several years, donations to Sculpture Space have been an esteemed tradition for Hubbell Galvanizing. It began with Dan Hubbell and his desire to give back to the community and support local artists by bidding on unique and incredible chairs as well as other works of art.

 Sculpture Space was founded in 1976 with the intention of supporting and recognizing contemporary art and artists in our community. ( These folks have been encouraging creativity since then by holding auctions, demonstrations, lectures, and giving cultural tours throughout the city of Utica.

 Not only does Hubbell continue that tradition today, but also Rick Mulvihill contributes by donating a work of art he crafts himself, utilizing recycled scrap material from our facility here at Hubbell. This year, being so close to Halloween, Rick created a unique and spirited “Web Chair” for the occasion, which was very well received. While I was looking at the completed chair for the first time myself in the gallery, some fellow onlookers were ooing and aweing at its themed whimsy. The chair, as pictured below, was featured in the auction, and went for approx. $500.00.

 The Adirondack style “Web Chair” is made out of repurposed steel scrap and recycled materials welded together and then galvanized, so the hair can weather any environment the new owner decides to display it in. It features a black widow spider perched on a web of steel wire, with a crescent moon and tree branches decorating the base. After galvanizing, the chair was powder coated orange, black and green at Fortress Fusion Coatings, our sister company. The chair is an excellent example of the services we offer not only to steel fabricators, but artisans as well.

 Several other members of the Mulvihill clan were featured in the exhibit and auction including Suzanne Firsching (Serving as this year’s Committee Chair of the auction), Sharon Mulvihill, and Cathleen Mulvihill, making this a wonderful family affair. I have to say I have never seen so much talent in one family! I was lucky enough to experience this year’s auction and got a front row seat while some of the bidding was taking place. It was inspiring to be surrounded by the art and I definitely felt a sense of community and appreciation for our local artists and patrons.

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