Who Says a Dinosaur Can't Live in a City?


Our Pick Your Print poll to decide the design for this year’s United Arts print is really heating up! To add some fire to the already difficult decision, the Gale Sisters at Hartford Prints! are going to share their opinions on each of the three designs they crafted. For their first selection, they turn the spotlight on Alexander Calder’s Stegosaurus, one of Hartford’s most defining public art pieces tucked between the Wadsworth and City Hall on Burr Mall.

Those Quirky Gales!

Addy – Older Sister

Alexander Calder is probably my all-time favorite artist.  Ever since I was a little girl, I have been enamored with his mobiles and charmed by Hartford’s own Stegosaurus. It is my single favorite piece of art in our city and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to possibly create a print based on this magnificent sculpture. The view from Main Street makes Stegosaurus seem as though he is standing in his own private forest, perhaps drinking from a stream or just lazying about in the sun. And if one stands at just the right angle, one can see the dome of the Colt Building peeking out from between his legs.  These two elements, the grove of trees and the Colt dome, would definitely be included in my woodcut – implying that though Stegosaurus seems to be in the woods, he actually lives in the city. If it helps with the voting – this is my favorite of the three ideas and the one I would most enjoy creating! 🙂

Callie – Middle Sister

I love this print for several reasons! First, Calder’s Stegosaurus is probably one of the most defining pieces of public art for Hartford, as well as for my childhood. I have fond memories of playing in, under, and around this bright, beautiful, bolted dinosaur and love the way the geometric patterns and heavy materials create something that is industrial, yet totally alive. Second, I love how Addy is incorporating the trees into the print. Hartford has some of the most beautiful green open spaces, from Bushnell Park to Keney Park to our riverfront, which I think are more often overlooked than explored. This print reminds us that we should be urban adventurers in the living parts of our city, since they (like the dinosaurs) were here first! Finally, I think that the aesthetic of this print really reflects what Hartford Prints! is all about. We are working in an old (some might even say “extinct”) medium, striving to illustrate what Hartford, its vibrant cultural scene, and its inspiring people, are all about.

Calder's Stegosaurus

Rory – Younger Sister

There is something so magical about Calder’s Stegosaurus. I remember as a kid playing at the feet of this sculpture and feeling big and small at the same time. Hartford Prints! created a print using the Stegosaurus in 2010 with our student Danny Tobias. This print included the text, “Who says a dinosaur can’t live in a city?” This simple, yet provocative statement challenges the way you look at our city. That’s what we strive to do at Hartford Prints!; unveil Hartford’s beauty and limitless offerings. As an expression of public art, I believe this print will continue to connect idiosyncrasies that we sometimes find living in a city, both big and small.

Have a soft spot for dinosaurs in your heart? VOTE NOW to make sure this jurassic beauty dominates the competition! Next up: Mark Twain in front of the Hartford Public Library!

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