Giant Nude Woman
Judging by the metal perm hairdo on this giant nude woman, we figured she materialized here to distract drivers sometime in the 1980s. It is, in fact, a 1988 sculptural work by artist Dennis Patton. But why is she sprawled at the entrance of a shopping center, soaking in the sun in a Marin County micro-climate?
The 17-ft. long lady, made from Cor-Ten steel, is not called "Hot Tub Sleepover," as we guessed -- the title of the piece is "Tamalpais Maiden." The word "tamalpais" in the local native American language translates to "sleeping lady," and the area's highest geologic feature -- Mt. Tamalpais -- languidly snores in the background.
In the late 1980s the statue was placed in front of the Bon Air Shopping Center to spark local interest and fund-raising for a proposed [clothed] statue of explorer Sir Francis Drake (the shopping center is on Sir Francis Drake Boulevard).
That effort succeeded, and by 1990 Patton's 30-ft. tall Drake was wielding his sword and flag in a park in nearby Larkspur -- too far away for him to eye the sleeping lady. The shopping center liked her so much they left her in permanent slumber.