Artist will pay to remove disputed sculpture from Kirkwood Hotel

Image of the sculpture "Before the Sun Speaks" as it was originally installed at the Hotel at...
Image of the sculpture "Before the Sun Speaks" as it was originally installed at the Hotel at Kirkwood that was included in federal court filings.(U.S. District Court filing)
Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 1:09 PM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The artist who made a sculpture will pay to remove her sculpture from the Hotel at Kirkwood Community College after she sued, claiming the college had mutilated it.

Molly Mason designed the sculpture as a water fountain when it was installed when the hotel opened in 2008. She filed a lawsuit in 2021 claiming Kirkwood had altered her work by removing the water feature and replacing it with plants around the base, referring to it as an “overgrown planter”. Her lawsuit sought to force Kirkwood to return the water feature.

As part of a settlement filed last month, Mason agreed to cover any arrangements needed to remove her work from the hotel within 6 months.

The settlement also carried a nondisclosure agreement, so Kirkwood Community College would only release a summary document of the settlement agreement.

Video shows the sculpture and the artist describing the work shortly after it was installed: