The "Spirit of Sterling Heights," commissioned by the Sterling Heights Cultural Commission in 1990, is a creation of the late Michigan sculptor, Marcia Wood. Wood's artistic contributions to society can be found throughout Michigan, Indiana and Japan.
The sculpture was unveiled on October 2, 1990 after an intense statewide competition to provide Sterling Heights with an artistic focal point. A panel of 3 professionals (Jay Holland, Thomas Strat and Mary Stephenson) selected the final work from 3 finalists.
According to sculptor Marcia Wood, "the sculpture I designed for Sterling Heights expresses in simple and bold forms, my understanding of the special features which make up the identity of this community."
"I thought about the pride Sterling Heights takes in its strong working partnership among the community's businesses, government, and civic leaders. The City is young and growing, but with firm roots. I have taken the arch as a symbol of continuity with the past. It is a complex arch suggesting the many ethnic groups, which make up this diverse community. The large scale of the sculpture echoes the permanence and vigorousness of this dynamic community. The embracing form suggests the friendliness of the City and the open spaces reflect the constant flow of new ideas. The whole sculpture is about structures and how interdependent they are. The structures are simple, but complex in their relationships."
The "Spirit of Sterling Heights" was partially funded by the Michigan Council for the Arts. Other contributors included…Amerivest Properties, Borg Warner, Chrysler Foundation, Comcast Cablevision, Credit Union One, Cultural Commissioners, Damman Hardware, Dayton-Hudson, Patricia DeForest, Detroit Edison, Steve M. Duchane, Gannet Foundation, General Dynamics, Patricia Lehman, Michigan Bell, Nordin and Associates, Paul J. O'Reilly, Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Rolley, Southland Corporation (7-Eleven), Sterling Heights Municipal Employees, and the V.I.P. Credit Union.
The "Spirit of Sterling Heights" is erected at 40555 Utica Road in front of the Sterling Heights City Hall on the grounds of the Sterling Heights City Center (corner of Utica and Dodge Park Roads).