Art on the Avenues is a community non-profit (501c3) committed to “provide our communities with sustainable, innovative, and educational programs through the exhibition and sale of sculpture.” We achieve this through two main programs: our public sculpture exhibit and Beauty of Bronze, an educational art program for local fifth graders.
AOTA began in 1995 with only 20 sculptures loaned to us for a year from artists all over the country. Today there are nearly 90 sculptures in the exhibit, most of which were acquired by AOTA or the City of Riverside to remain on permanent display in the community. A few sculptures in the exhibit are visiting, and currently up for sale.
The Beauty of Bronze program began in 2004 with the fifth graders at Columbia Elementary School. Over the past 15 years the program has grown to include all the fifth graders in Wenatchee’s public schools, as well as The River Academy private school and Soap Lake Elementary, a total of about 625 students and their teachers in 2019. Each year at least 50 community volunteers help with the two-week long Beauty of Bronze field days. Students spend the day with Sultan-based sculptor Kevin Pettelle to learn what it means to be an artist. They work collaboratively in small groups to create large sculptures out of sticks, rocks, bones and other natural materials in the Andy Goldsworthy Challenge. They sketch sculptures at Art on the Avenues Sculpture Garden in Riverfront Park and take a backstage tour at the Performing Arts Center. And each student makes a small sculpture out of wax that is cast into bronze and exhibited at the Wenatchee Valley Museum, this year from Dec. 20, 2019 to Jan. 4, 2020. At the end of the student exhibit, the young artists receive their bronzes to keep forever.