Public Art

  • THRESHOLD
    2011
    Byzantine glass mosaic, onyx, marble, fiber optics
    8' x 20'
    Commissioned for the School of Human Ecology, Threshold symbolizes the field of study emphasizing the intricate interrelationships between humans, animals, our environment, and the systems in which we all function. The large orbs are backlit onyx giving a symbolic glimpse to the glowing future beyond college. The wall where Threshold is located is actually underground which inspired the geological formation of the artwork's aesthetic that implies one is looking through a cross-section excavation of the wall.

    Photo by David Bader
  • GROVE
    2008
    Byzantine glass mosaic mural | laser-cut, powder-coat aluminum shade canopy
    Mural: 16' x 35' | Canopy: 12' x 18' x 12'
    Winner of the International Parking Institute 2009 Award of Merit

    Mosaic feature wall and shade canopy for new arts district in downtown Claremont (CA) that included the rehab of former fruit packing plants into artist studios, museum, theater, restaurants and retail. Artwork references early citrus-growing industry in a celebratory, non-nostaligic way for this progressive small town.  

    Photo by Saskia Siebrand
  • LEARNING CURVE
    2012

    Medium: Powder-coated steel, Eastman “Tritan”, Tennessee flat stone and local river rock, recycled brick, concrete
    Dimensions: 36‘ x 25’ x 11’
    Client: City of Kingsport, TN
    Budget: $75,000

    Learning Curve honors the past of this small Appalachian town as one of the country’s leading producers of brick and aggregate as well as the world headquarters of Eastman Chemical. It marks the entry to a new campus the city is building to train a workforce that will attract new growth to help them avoid the fate of so many other American industrial towns. The canopy is a map of the 1906 “City Beautiful” town plan and was fabricated by a local sculptor, John Robinson at Appalachian Ironworks. The inset material is “Tritan”, a newly-invented monomer donated by Eastman Chemical. The recycled brick is from a demolished paper plant, another former industry once important to the town. A local concrete worker and mason did the stonework.

    Photos by Lynn Basa
  • COURSING THROUGH LIFE
    2010
    Medium: Terrazzo floor, recycled glass, mirror
    Dimensions: 25' x 100'
    Client: University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls
    Budget: $75,000

    Terrazzo floor with recycled glass and mirror designed to unify main axis corridor in the renovation of Sabin Hall at University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls. Imagery represents the melding of ideas and communities that occur in college.

    College changes people. New friends and ideas shape old ways of thinking. You’re not exactly the same person who entered school by the time you leave. Coursing Through Life is about this transformation. It slices through the rigid rectangularity of the old building like a force of Nature. Like the best original thinking, there is no pattern of conformation.

    Photos by Doug vanderHoof
  • THE GREAT CIRCLE ROUTE
    Winner, National Terrazzo & Mosaic Association 2009 Honor Award

    Medium: Terrazzo, mosaic
    Dimensions: 220' diameter x 10'
    Client: Indianapolis Airport Authority 
    Budget: $400,000

    Encircling the public gathering plaza in the heart of the new Indianapolis Airport, The Great Circle Route references a system of navigation known to pilots and sailors while symbolically representing the journeys individuals take through their lives.

    Photos by Garry Chilluffo
  • BOWER
    2012
    Powder-coated steel, cast glass, LED, fiber optic
    9 columns, heights from 7’ to 19’
    Bower is a forest of nine beacons for a residence hall at the University of Northern Iowa. The columns range in height from 9' to 19' and consist of steel and copper columns topped by cast glass houses. The entire length of each column is lit by LED and fiber optic light so that they glow at night. The sculptures were fabricated and installed by students in the UNI Sculpture Department's Public Art Incubator under the direction of Professor Tom Stancliffe. In this way the funds for the artwork were returned to the economy of the campus and created summer jobs and training for deserving students. Other fabricators included Meltdown Glass and Byron Bewley Lighting. The total budget was $200,000.

    Photo by Doug vanderHoof
  • CARY THEATER
    2014

    Materials: Powder-coated steel, programmable LED, fiber optics, acrylic, rustic terrazzo
    Dimensions: Marquee - 34’ x 24’ x 8’
    Plaza - 34’ x 20’
    Client: Cary, North Carolina
    Budget: $187,000 
    Fabricators: Matt McConnell, David Allen Company, Colorlume
    Architect: Leora Mirvish, Quinn Evans Architects

    As the lead artist on the design team for the adaptive reuse of this post-WWII main-street theater, I was given the opportunity to choose any aspect of the site to address with artwork. I chose the marquee because it would have the most impact for their $187,000 budget, as well as for the challenge of reinterpreting the marquee form to meet the client’s directive that it should “honor the past while looking toward the future.” The goal of the theater renovation is to jump-start redevelopment in Cary’s historic downtown. In our design, I took into account that Cary is in the middle of North Carolina’s famed high-tech Research Triangle. The result was a hybrid of traditional marquee forms (including hand-placed letters) combined with state-of-the-art programmable lighting. 

    I asked to be partnered with a local artist as part of the city’s mentorship program. Originally he was only going to be involved with the design, but I lobbied strongly for him to get the fabrication contract, which he subsequently won. We found a local lighting company and terrazzo firm to work with thereby keeping most of the funds in the local tax base that generated them.

    Photos by Sterling E. Stevens
  • CORNUCOPIA
    2014

    Materials: Byzantine glass mosaic and hand-painted ceramic
    Dimensions: 130" x 117"
    Client: Chicago Transit Authority 
    Fabricator: Mosaika
    Installed by: Bourbon Tile

    The neighborhood around the Argyle station abounds with variety.  Cultures mix in a melting pot of cuisines, art, music, and color with joyful abundance and harmony.  I think of each of these flower forms as unique individuals, each one with their own distinctive personalities, moving through the Argyle station on their way to someplace else.


    photos by Tom Van Eynde