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  • KC Pruitt

"A is for Allen"

In 2012, the City of Allen Texas commissioned artist Gordon Huether to create works of art to be installed along East Exchange Parkway. The art was to honor local history. The primary focus is a12' wide x 16' tall sculpture in the shape of an abstract "A" (A is for Allen) that greets commuters on the Central Expressway and US Highway 75 as they travel through Allen. Native limestone, is a major component of the contemporary artwork. The sculpture also incorporates stacked glass, powder coated and stainless steel, to represent the current dynamic and modern community. That is only part of the installation. Traveling along Exchange between Central Expressway and Rivercrest Boulevard there are several pieces of glass, limestone, red powder coated steel, stainless steel.these appear to be random peices strewn in the median of the parkway. While the peices were being installed, It looked as if someone had dropped parts and left them there. My first impression was "what a mess". As a resident of Allen, my initial fear was that it would become an eyesore and a community shame. I conjured up thoughts like "oh yes, Allen that is where the ugly art that looks like a junkyard is". I really did not see it for what is was supposed to be. This was part of a $1.5 million dollar appropriation for public art in Allen. Soon however, the large sculpture was installed and it looked magnificant, especially at sunrise when light is refracted through the glass. The peices that once looked like leftovers now blend in as part of the whole. Not only is the Art a source of pride, it points the way to Allen High School and it's sprawling sports complex. If you are ever driving through Allen Texas, I suggest slowing down, exiting Exchange Parkway and driving east to Greenville avenue paying attention to the median art before returning on your journey.

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