Square sculpture to be ‘tumbled’ Tuesday in honor of Tom Billionis
This tumble’s for you, Tom Billionis.
Workers for the Public Works Department are dedicating the summertime rotation of the Park Central Square sculpture, the Tumbler, to late Coffee Ethic owner, Tom Billionis, at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 21.
Billionis, who died April 16, 2016 was running on the Sac River Trail on Saturday when he suffered a medical emergency. He was a passionate supporter of downtown Springfield business development. Tuesday, June 21, would have been his 45th birthday.
“Tom was really excited when we discovered the sculpture is supposed to be tumbled every season,” says Public Works Assistant Director Martin Gugel. “It is right outside his coffee shop. We think this is a fitting way to honor his memory, especially on his birthday.”
Created by Greek American sculptor Aris Demetrios, “The Tumbler” was installed on the square in 1971 and is regarded as Springfield’s first piece of modern art. It was discovered in recent years that the sculpture was intended to be re-oriented, or “tumbled,” every season to create a new piece of art. Creation of the Tumbler was funded by an arts patron identified as “Mrs. Monroe Swyers,” who reportedly donated $15,000. Demetrios said that barely covered the cost of steel to make it.