Flight of the Honey Bee

Artist: Ross and Elizabeth Fiersten (Manifold)
Location: Ravenswood Ave and Montrose Ave, SW corner (west side of the tracks)
Materials: Steel
Dimensions: 60"
Installation Date: May 10, 2022

Artist Statement

Graphic data is often used to represent what happens in the wild. Flight of the Honey Bee is a sculptural interpretation of an existing soundwave captured as bees were returning to a hive. 

Flapping their wings an average of 230 beats per second causes the air around a bee to vibrate and that vibration travels to our ears as a buzzing sound. The shapes and colors chosen for this sculpture attempt to capture that physicality while embracing the abundant joy pollination brings. We have honey bees and other pollinators to thank for the colorful food we eat and the beautiful flowers we see.

The seating component of this installation [COMING SOON] serves to encourage local gardeners to exchange plants within the semi-circular holes that correspond with various standard plant containers.  The hope is that this sculpture stands as a vibrant reminder of what we have and what we can share with others.


Project Details

Flight of the Honeybee was designed and fabricated by Ravenswood-based metalworking studio Manifold and commissioned by the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce (GRCC) and Special Service Area #31.

After joining the newly formed GRCC in early 2016, artist and Manifold co-owner Elizabeth Fiersten expressed interest in creating a sculpture for the Ravenswood Industrial Corridor. A block away at the corner of Ravenswood and Montrose avenues was an unused bus shelter on a concrete pad.

With no bus service on Ravenswood Ave, GRCC received approval from the Chicago Department of Transportation to remove the shelter. Then 47th Ward Alderman Ameya Pawar’s office assisted with the removal. Manifold designed Flight of the Honeybee to exist in harmony with the Ravenswood Industrial Corridor and the Montrose Metra Community Gardens.

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Sponsors: Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce, Special Service Area #31

About the Artist

Artist Elizabeth Fiersten.

Ross and Elizabeth Fiersten are co-owners of Manifold, a metal studio in Ravenswood that has been producing and designing furniture, sculpture, and accessories in Chicago for over two decades.

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