The Flossy fountain and statue in front of and the city’s temporarily closed Mizner Park Amphitheater could get a makeover. “If not now when?” Deputy Mayor Andrea Levine O’Rourke said before getting council consensus to use downtime constructively.
Art in Public Places funds can be used to repair and buff up three statues on the city owned site, O’Rourke said. “Flossy and the fountain and the Count and Countess de Hoernle next to the stage are in disrepair. We are not valuing them. There’s money in the budget. Why not show some community pride?”
“I like it,” Mayor Scott Singer said. “The Flossy statue could use some maintenance. Let’s gussy her up.”
Flossy Keesley would have loved that, said Boca-based sculptor and artist Yaacov Heller, who created the statues. Keesley posed and paid for her likeness in the early ‘90s as a youth talent philanthropist, he said. “She modeled for Reaching for the Stars and put on a talent show,” Heller added. “I’ve been after them to do this since she died in 2016. It has to be done every year to prevent the sun from destroying the bronze.”
Heller, who has a gallery in Royal Palm Place, gave the city contacts for the companies she used, but upkeep fell through the cracks. There was no maintenance money in the budget, city manager Leif Ahnell said.
There’s no exact timeline yet. But the idea already has legs. “Based on council discussion, right now we are gathering information on cleaning and restoration of both the statues,” said Amy DiNorscio, amphitheater manager.
O’Rourke also floated putting out a call to artists to paint the metal curtains covering the amphitheater stage.
“It could be a message of hope, a mural with community identity, something artsy,” she said. “Public art is beloved, and the few we’ve done…create a sense of place. Let’s do something vintage Boca.”
By Marci Shatzman