Many Los Altos residents will remember the iconic “Dancing Man” sculpture that once graced the entrance to the former Hillview Community Center. He danced in the jasmine bed and beckoned both children and adults to greet him, dance with him and/or mimic his happy stance. He now cavorts at Marymeade Park as he awaits his new location at the rebuilt Los Altos Community Center.
Both “Dancing Man” and “Conversation Peace,” sculptures owned by the city of Los Altos, will find new homes at the community center, as will a surprise sculpture that will be disclosed and described in an upcoming Town Crier column. There also will be exciting new art inside the rebuilt center, which will be highlighted in an article soon.
“Dancing Man,” by San Jose artist James Moore, was installed in 2008 and purchased by the city in 2010. Moore is a self-taught artist who began sculpting classical busts and figures and then morphed his figures into a more abstract geometrical style. He feels that geometric forms that resemble the human body are easy for all people to relate to.
Moore’s sculptures are intended to spark curiosity, joy and fun as an antidote to life’s problems. The sculptures are made of structural aluminum and stainless steel, both of which stand up well in outside placement.
“I want my artwork to add something to the positive of the world … by exploring themes of hope, strength, balance and playful possibility,” Moore said.
Come dance with “the Man” when the community center opens. Meanwhile, you can enjoy Moore’s two suites of sculptures at Foothill College – take yourself on a scavenger hunt that includes the chemistry building – and you can soon see five new Moore sculptures set to be installed at Sunnyvale’s Fair Oaks Park.
Ginny Strock is a member of the Los Altos Public Arts Commission.