Mini ‘Symbols’ among unique offerings at J.R. Kortman Center for Design

Mini “Symbols” at J.R. Kortman Center for Design. Image provided

From press release

Rockford’s “Symbol,” by internationally-celebrated artist Alexander Liberman, soars in Sinnissippi Park along the east bank of the Rock River, inspiring all who drive, bike or walk by. This exciting piece of art is now available in a miniature 2-D metal “replica,” which is not only a great souvenir, but can be used as a bookend, votive stand or expressive decorative object.

The small-scaled “Symbol,” which also comes as an ornament, was designed by J.R. Kortman along with artist Ben Pettee, who manufactured each piece in his North Main Street studio here in Rockford.

The large “bookend” version is $20 and the small “votive” one is $10. The store window features these sweet little “Symbols” with an original maquette, which was created by Liberman and sold as a fund-raiser for this world-class sculpture. The maquette is on loan to J.R. Kortman courtesy of Roland and Louise Poska.

Probably the most influential architect of the last century was Frank Lloyd Wright. J.R. Kortman celebrates his great design genius with a range of products from pottery to neckties. A replica of “Flower in the Crannied Wall,” designed by Wright and Richard Bock in 1902 for the Susan Lawrence Dana House in Springfield, Ill., is availble for $125. The distinctive pottery is made right here in Illinois, at the Haeger Pottery Company in East Dundee.

Lego fans will find the “Falling Water” and Guggenheim Museum kits both challenging and rewarding. And a “Concretus” paperweight will add sophisticated accent to any desktop or coffee table.

J.R. Kortman Center for Design is at 107 N. Main St., downtown Rockford. The store is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday-Saturday. For more information, call (815) 968-0123 or visit

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