Managing Partner Marc Krantz and his partners celebrate GuitarMania 2012 by honoring Marine Week and the Marine Corp with its very own guitar, designed by artist Sgt. Gregory Pramik of the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment, Brook Park, Ohio. The guitar is located on Public Square in front of the 55 Public Square building. GuitarMania is a Greater Cleveland community public art project that has raised $2 million for its two benefiting charities – United Way of Greater Cleveland and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum’s education programs.
“CLEVELAND, Ohio — GuitarMania is back. This year’s edition — 60 custom-designed, 10-foot-tall replicas of Fender Stratocaster guitars — were unveiled Friday at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.
They will stay there for the weekend before being dispersed to the streets of downtown Cleveland, where they will stay for the summer. Then, on Labor Day weekend, they will be auctioned off to raise money for the United Way of Greater Cleveland and the Rock Hall’s education programs.
This is the fourth GuitarMania since 2002. Three previous campaigns raised a total of $2 million, including the sale of a $100,000 guitar created by Yoko Ono, the widow of Beatle John Lennon.
This year, United Way secured sponsors who paid $7,500 each for one of the gigantic guitars, created by the Fender Guitar Co. The sponsors then chose and hired an artist to decorate the guitar to put on display.
When the guitars go up for auction, the original sponsor gets first crack at buying its own guitar back for an additional $7,500; otherwise they go to the highest bidder.
Among this year’s sponsors are rockers Alice Cooper, Cyndi Lauper and Phil Collen , co-lead guitarist for Def Leppard, whose design has a Jackson Pollock-like motif.
“These [60 guitars] are a big tourist attraction for the city,” said Jenna Snyder, United Way spokeswoman.””
United Way-sponsored artist Greg Renkas created a retro “Steam Punk” guitar, outfitted with Victorian pipes, valves and clocks.
The Collection Auto Group hired artist Justin Rolli to turn its guitar into a car with the addition of a shiny car hood that actually lifts up to expose the guitar face.
Mark Goodak’s striking tribute to the 2012 Summer National Senior Games raised eyebrows because the guitar, painted to resemble a torch, is upside down and held by a muscular arm.
Hundreds of people gathered outside the Rock Hall on Friday to witness the unveiling of the guitars, and all had their favorites.
Sarah Pierce, 35, of Lakewood, was partial to the “Teach a man to fish” guitar with its simple, cartoony scene of a man catching a fish in primary colors, created by her cousin, Meagan Pierce. But she liked them all.
“Everyone is so creative,” she said. “They create things that are so beautiful and yet help raise money for worthy causes. It’s amazing.””