In 2014, Marshalltown was selected as an Iowa Great Place. The Arts + Culture Alliance administered the grant which included $100,000 for the 13th Street District and $250,000 for a public art project and exterior enhancements at the MHS Roundhouse.
The 15-member selection committee included MHS students, Marshalltown Community School District staff and public art committee members. The committee received over 61 artist applications from across the United States and even one artist in Australia. In 2016, Gail Folwell of Boulder, Colorado was selected to complete the project which was to include the sculpture, lighting, banners, benches, and a display of the original Roundhouse window plexiglass pieces in the Roundhouse foyer.
Drills is a 18′ aluminum sculpture of three basketball players (2 male & 1 female) sitting at the entrance of the renovated Marshalltown High School Roundhouse. Since installed in 2016, Drills welcomes you to the iconic Roundhouse representing community spirit and pride while exemplifying excellence and innovation. Drills captures the excitement of student life while paying homage to the building’s history and architecture. Check out a video clip of the installation of Drills.
“The beauty of public art is the capacity to connect a personal experience to place. As an athlete and artist, I have long been fascinated by body language and what a gesture can convey. I make art to visit an experience. For the same reasons we play games, attend events and watch sports – I want to feel the effects of something inspiring. I am Gail Folwell, a sculptor of public art.” – Gail Folwell
- Be compatible with and celebrate the unique architectural qualities of the Roundhouse
- Provide a “wow factor” which invites people to enter the facility
- Exemplify excellence and innovation
- Convey a sense of community and inclusiveness
- Represent energy and movement