Bonneville Reliquary: Upstream

A series of five monumental outdoor bronze sculptures of Bonneville Cutthroat trout swimming through hoops allegorical of a river.

Bonneville Reliquary: Upstream
Public Art in Bronze
2008 commission Salt LakeCity Arts Council
Sugarhouse Business District, 1300 E. / 2100 S., Salt LakeCity, UT


The popularity of the first school of trout led to a second grouping further up the street, in the median of a busy intersection. This series of five monumental outdoor bronze sculptures has the Bonneville Cutthroat trout swimming with greater animation, through hoops allegorical of a river, marking the SugarhouseBusiness District’s east boundary.
"Upstream" here refers to swimming against the current to reach the spawning ground. It is coincidentally a term used to refer to the part of the oil industry responsible for the exploration and recovery of oil and natural gas reserves- which means Fracking and Tar Sands and biosphere obliteration.
Swimming up stream, the fish commemorate the rich water history of Sugar House, once the crossroads of the city's irrigation system. The work references the lost riparian ecosystems of the West, in particular Parley's Creek which is diverted underground one block to the east, and the underground Canal System constructed for agriculture in the 19 th century which flows through the area. The Bonneville cutthroat was native to the ancient Lake Bonneville. This trout species can still be found in mountain lakes and streams. As urban sprawl makes harder demands on the delicate local ecosystem, the last remnants of biodiversity vanish unnoticed.
Back to Top