Center In the Square

Center In The Square; Roanoke, Virginia USA
Center In The Square; Roanoke, Virginia USA


Public Installation

Center In The Square
Roanoke, Virginia USA

Installation Date
September 2013

Center In The Square →

This art installation is a collaboration between Center in the Square and local metal sculptor, Dave Wertz. It is a rich and exciting example of what can happen when a large foundation, Western Virginia Foundation for the Arts and Sciences, comes together with a local artist. Together, they have created an art installation project that supports the themes and concepts behind the historic renovation of Center in the Square. Now, in addition to the amazing aquariums that offer us an insight into the beautiful underwater world of fish, we have an art installation that will intrigue and excite the imagination and creative energy in all who visit.


Wertz says he started making fish many years ago simply because his son is an avid fly fisherman. “I wanted my son to believe that I really was an artist, so I made something I knew he loved — fish.” The fish series proved to be very popular. Like everything, though, the fish designs had to grow and change — from the original, realistic Steelheads of the Pacific Northwest to the present abstractions of colorful and whimsical tropical creatures that suggest far-flung exotic places. Each fish is an original: a one-of-a-kind piece of art. They are hand fabricated from hot rolled carbon steel and then painted and patinaed as only Wertz can do. These fish look as if they have just finished a long hard migration. Let’s just say, getting some personality out of a fish can be a challenge, and from the look of these fish, Wertz has figured it out.