Birth of a Muse - CODAworx

Birth of a Muse

Submitted by Kim Bernadas

Client: Percent for Art City of New Orleans

Location: New Orleans, LA, United States

Completion date: 2011

Artwork budget: $30,000

Project Team

Industry Resource

Michael Carpino

Art Foundry Carpino

Landscape Architect

Rene Fransen

Rene Fransen landscape architects, llc


Birth of a Muse was the first post Katrina Percent for Arts Sculpture commissioned by the Arts Council and the city of New Orleans.Theme and design created by the artist, with a message of welcoming spirit to all returning back to the city after the Hurricane.She invokes a new vitality, a “rebirth” which was represented in the use of the lily as Terpsichore the Muse of Dance emerges from the flower with her tambourine on her hip and beckoning horn to her lips. She is 7 foot tall, bronze and seated above a 30″ pedestal.


The goals were to bring the community together after the horrific Hurricane Katrina, revitalize the Lower Garden District area and send a message of rebirth to the community. The chosen site was located at the entrance of Coliseum Square Park in New Orleans and is a well visited area , visible from the popular Garden District area and St. Charles Avenue streetcars. The sculpture and pedestal are raised high above the street on a semi-circular structure that was originally a bandstand area, enabling viewers to observe from great distances as well as within close area.


The collaboration process included the Arts Council of New Orleans, the mayors office of cultural development, the Lower Garden District Association, local councilman, the artist, landscape architects and engineers for the city, as well as support staff for the pedestal creation and placement. Once the design was created by the artist and finalized by the committee it was sculpted and cast within 12 months and installed by crane to the site. This artist also coordinated a musical entertainment for the unveiling that included dancers and musicians in Greek attire. Maintenance and care details were provided for the Arts Council as well as archival print photos.

Additional Information

It has become a well loved landmark and part of every tour guide stop, considered the Muse that watches over our city.