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SG, administration call on student artists for Azul statue

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A 1-foot prototype of what the unfinished fiberglass Azul statues will look like. Photo courtesy of Cory Mentzer.

Student artists will be given the chance to leave their mark on a campus sculpture this January with Azul’s Flight Tour, a design competition in which local and student artists can submit proposals to paint or decorate a 6-foot tall, 150 pound fiberglass eagle statue.
Student Government and the Florida Gulf Coast University Foundation are hosting the competition, which will announce six winners in January.
Cory Mentzer, SG vice president, came up with the idea for Azul’s Flight Tour in August after reading about a similar event at Iowa State University.
“I was researching ideas to bring more school spirit to campus and I came across the University of Iowa’s ‘Herky on Parade’ campaign,” Mentzer said. Herkey the hawk is the mascot of Iowa University. “They had artists from throughout the entire community and state decorate these fiberglass Herky statues, and then they auctioned them off as a fundraiser.”
Mentzer’s goal is to have artists submit designs to decorate statues of Azul, and then place the finished statues in locations throughout campus. In two years, for FGCU’s 20th anniversary, he hopes the school will auction these statues off to local businesses to raise money for scholarships.
“My large-scale goal is to get them up and down businesses on Corkscrew and Gulf Coast Town Center. An Azul statue could be at Miller’s Ale House, or Moe’s,” Mentzer said.
Guidelines and packets to submit a design are available online at:
Artists must mail or hand-deliver designs to the Office of the Vice President of Student Affairs by Jan. 20 at noon, and the six winners will be announced on Jan. 28. Each winner will be awarded $1,000 and will have until Feb. 25 to design and return their statue.
The locations where the statues will be placed will be determined once the designs are received.

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