PEMO & Partners Unveil Nautilus Sculpture at Pride Plaza

News Article
Photo credit: Andy Batt @andybattportfolio

The City of Portland’s Public Environment Management Office, alongside partners, recently unveiled the Nautilus Sculpture by Sparks Designs at Pride Plaza, located at SW 12th and Harvey Milk Way in the West End of Downtown Portland. The light-based public art installation is designed to activate the plaza and draw locals and visitors to the area.

Nautilus Sculpture 2

The Nautilus Sculpture, a 12-foot art piece leased from the Portland Winter Light Festival, refracts kaleidoscopic beams onto the neighborhood, casting prismatic patterns of shadow and light on a grand scale. The installation evokes awe for the mysterious Nautilus and its deep-sea habitat while raising awareness about the conservation of this endangered marine species. The installation debuted at Pride Plaza on May 29 after being displayed at the Salmon Springs Fountain since February. 

Anne Hill, Deputy Director of PEMO, remarked on the collaborative effort to bring this project to fruition. “We’ve been working to bring back the city, bring back reasons to come downtown and hang out. Because this is a nice, blocked-off, pedestrian space with bikes, people can safely look at the statue, come and take pictures here.” 

The City of Portland's Public Environment Management Office worked with the Portland Bureau of Transportation, the Portland Winter Light Festival, and adjacent property owners to bring the statue to Pride Plaza. 

The sculpture is scheduled to be on display throughout Pride Month and through the end of July.

PEMO’s ongoing revitalization projects also include efforts at Ankeny Triangle, Dawson Park, Gateway/Menlo Park, and the Montavilla/Jade District/82nd area. These initiatives reflect PEMO’s mission to enhance livability, economic vitality, and community safety through the efficient management and activation of public spaces.

(Photo Credit: Andy Batt @andybattportfolio)

  • For more information on sculpture creator Heather Dawn Sparks and her team at Sparks Designs, click here.
  • For more information on the Portland Winter Light Festival, click here.