Fred Dobbs wins People’s Choice

Sea Otter Plaque will be added to Sidney’s permanent sculpture collection

Sculptor Fred Dobbs received the People’s Choice Award from Sidney Mayor Larry Cross and Councillor Marilyn Loveless. Dobbs’ Sea Otter Plaque will be added to the Town’s permanent collection in its Sculpture Walk art display.

Sculptor Fred Dobbs says his award-winning work was inspired by the Salish Sea, the creatures in it and the threats to their future that they face every day.

Dobbs’ work, Sea Otter Plaque, was named the winner of the People’s Choice Award by the Town of Sidney on Feb. 12 at a special artists’ reception at the Sidney Pier Hotel. People voted 732 times and Dobbs’ plaque came out on top. That means the Town will purchase the artwork and add it to their permanent collection featured in their waterfront walkway Sculpture Walk.

Dobbs said he was thrilled and happy to have earned the People’s Choice award. He said he completed the plaque more than two years ago.

“I really wanted to look at the ocean in motion,” he said of his sculpture.

“It shows that there are many things taking place within the ocean.”

With a passion for the ocean and for wildlife, Dobbs said he felt the theme of the work was exactly what the Sculpture Walk needed.

He added he’s very happy now that his work will remain in the public eye for years to come.

Tied for second place (and splitting the $500 prize money) were the pieces Pure Energy (by Armando Barbon) and Eye of the Ocean (David Hunwick). Third place (and $300) went to Jack E. Kreutzer’s Shout!.

Barbon, announced Sidney Mayor Larry Cross during the reception, has donated Pure Energy to the municipality, further expanding their sculpture collection.

“This is an exciting evening for the Town of Sidney,” said Cross during the For The Love Of Art gala at the Pier Hotel. “It’s wonderful how everything came together.”

He credits the Community Arts Council of the Saanich Peninsula, Town staff, the Sculptors Guild and the Sidney Sculpture Walk Advisory Committee for their hard work.

This year, the Town will be putting out a call for more artists to take part in the Sculpture Walk. There will be room for three more pieces on the waterfront. Recently, said Cross, Lyman Whittaker’s Double Spinner sculpture was sold to a private buyer and will be moved.