New sculpture welcomes visitors to NCCCA

PLATTSBURGH A sculpture created by a local artist is the newest addition to the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts. The new piece of art by John Kokoszka of Plattsburgh was recently installed adjacent to the front entrance of the cultural center on Brinkerhoff Street, allowing Kokoszkas work to officially welcome patrons. The sculpture, titled Fights Depression, is a look at what one goes through in the daily struggles of depression, according to a description of the piece written by Kokoszka himself. The sculpture, he said, reminds him of the tough winter months many North Country people have to fight each year. People achieve things one step at a time and this helps them to get rid of the depression that seems to gloom over them in late winter and early spring, he said in a statement. It is my hope that people who deal with general depression may get good feelings from reviewing my sculpture. I get power from the sculpture; when I view this piece, my depression gets pushed away. I fight it off. I feel good. NCCCA Executive Director Susan R. Daul said the piece is part of an intricate relationship the center develops with its patrons. We are a community based organization and our mission is to bring the arts into the daily lives of the people of our region, she said. The creative process is stimulated, the artist creates and the center is the conduit for sharing. The arts promote cross-cultural understanding and allow cultures to recognize similarities, differences and celebrate diversity, she added. Art is not just important, art is essential for humanity. Daul said projects such as this stimulate thought and take on personal meaning by the viewer. Art shares a referenced moment in time meaningful to the artist. It tends to facilitate intuitive rather than rational understanding, Daul explained. Art arouses emotion and can be interpreted in a variety of ways. Each artistic expression has significance in the mind of the artist and when shared with other individuals, communication, expression, and education occur. What transpires is a shared human experience that essentially records what it is to be human, she added. Depression is serious and this is a serious sculpture, Kokoszka said.

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