Maybe if the zoo mounts were part of a food truck they would continue to cover it?

After this last week’s presser on the zoo mounts in which Paul chided the media about all the coverage, the media has been strangely quiet since.

I know, I know, there wasn’t a donation from Sanford or rejected mural designs this week, so it has been slow, but why not some followup stories;

• Speak with National and International Natural History Experts

• Talk with legislators about changing state law

• Interview ALL city councilors about their feelings on it

• When is it appropriate to have Executive Sessions? And what can be discussed?

• Elected leaders control of the media (this would be the best story).

• If not being disposed of in the landfill, where? (I think they will be cremated, which is really no different then throwing them in the dump).

It amazes me, that ONE elected official (out of 9) can just smack the media around for a couple of seconds at a press conference and the story runs cold. You could do HUNDREDS of stories about taxidermy, natural history, city history, open government, and the list goes on.


Every time I hear anything about the Bunker Ramp and Mural, I just shake my head because of a missed opportunity. I have been stating for a couple of years that you could put a BUILDING WRAP on the ramp that would advertise all the DTSF businesses. The best part is you could pay for the wrap with ad revenue and when the building is leased or sold, you simply roll it up and dispose of it.


While I haven’t priced one of these in a long time, my guess is it would be cheaper then the $30K it is taking to put up a mural (original art that will be destroyed). You could also incorporate images of DTSF intertwined into the piece.

With all the people working at city hall from media and marketing you would think at least one of them would have raised their hands and said, “Why not a building wrap?”

Oh that’s right, the ONE in ONE Sioux Falls stands for the only person making decisions in this city. No wonder he is stressed!

Not sure if many people follow tiki artist, SHAG, but you can see his images here. SHAG was actually inspired by mid-century commercial artists that painted in a similar style. I love the style and have a bunch of SHAG prints. But the mural needs more tikis and martini glasses.

Not sure if Portz was inspired by SHAG, but now days nothing is original, and I certainly steal ideas from several artists, most notably, Andy Warhol.

During the video the mayor made the comment that they are ‘doing it the right way’. According to who? You? He also said that the image was ‘Non-Controversial’ though I do see a nod to this guy going on. As the mayor also said ‘Art is subjective’ and exactly the reason that we shouldn’t allow ONE person or special group of people to be selecting public art behind closed doors.

During the public input period at the Active Transportation Board I commented on the darkness of city hall and how I have never seen it this bad in 20 years. I told the board, until you have a transparent government you accomplish very little.

I feel bad for all the good people involved with this project, from the artist, to the donor to the city staff who have to tow the line of secretive government because that is what your master demands, but at the end of the day you can either feed at that trough or you can do the right thing and say ‘NO. This is wrong.’

The mural will ultimately be an improvement of what we have now, but golly, that’s a lot of lipstick!

UPDATE: I am getting word that they will be working with Walter Portz over the next year to develop a mural, or something like that. Walter just recently finished the mural at Levitt. I guess the VAC expressed they were NOT happy about the process or the secrecy, can’t wait to see how the administration will spin this. I guess they are also keeping the donor’s name a secret as of right now, though we have some pretty good guesses who it is.

I am hearing a rumor that Planning Staff decided to drop a turd on the Visual Arts Commission at their meeting this morning, I would assume it is under new business, public art update.

I was NOT in attendance but I am hearing there was a work around for the Bunker Ramp mural and they are going to announce tomorrow (10:30 AM at the city’s Wednesday presser) that they are bringing it back (different design). I guess they did the planning and selection for this behind closed doors (I know, SHOCKER!) with ZERO input from the VAC and public and using a familiar donor.

It seems someone’s ego must have gotten the best of them.

As of right now, I can’t find much about it except on the agenda which spells nothing out so I guess we will have to see the big announcement, which I am sure will be announced HERE in advance.

Any dolt with just a little bit of experience in public art could tell you this is NOT how you approve public art.

An attorney said to me last week that if there has been this much silence from the city AND the defendant it is likely they are in mediation to settle.

Some would argue the city has legal standing in what they are doing, and on some level they do, but some would also argue that the constitutional and federal rights of the defendant is a much stronger case.

What would a possible settlement look like?

I don’t know, because to be honest with you I have never had to deal with such a thing, and I haven’t combed through every detail of the case.

In the simplest terms the city will probably allow him to finish the house and not demolish it, because as Judge Lange stated that would be a total waste, or as someone stated to me, tearing down the house would be the ultimate dick move by the city.

I don’t think the city has many other options.


The heck with the rubber stamps these bodies have, they have exchanged them for unexpected vacations and deferrals. Have you noticed lately that when the Lincoln and Minnehaha Commissions as well as the Sioux Falls City Council have to make an important decision one of the members will skip the meeting for a ‘scheduled’ vacation or they end up deferring it.

I wonder if any of them realize that when you put off an important decision it makes that ultimate final decision much harder for the public to swallow. Look at Pettigrew neighborhood. Past mayors, councils, officers and administrators have failed to make a dent over the past 30 years and the problem has gotten worse and the mayor calling 20% of the residents in Pettigrew alcoholics doesn’t help the situation.

As I have told councilors and mayors for the past 20 years, if you can’t do the job or are afraid to the job please resign so we can replace you with someone that can. I will agree that personal attacks that are unwarranted towards elected officials is unacceptable, but attacking your competence has always been free game. This has nothing to do with the character of those supposed leaders, it has to do with their courage, or the lack of.