Monday, February 28, 2011

Archived Project

Artist Bio

Keith Haring, "Acrobats"


On view through 2005

Battery Park City
Liberty Street at South End Avenue

Keith Haring, "Acrobats"  Photo: Tom Powel Imaging

Keith Haring, "Acrobats"  Photo: Tom Powel Imaging

Keith Haring conceived Acrobats one year after the first exhibition of his free-standing steel pieces at Leo Castelli Gallery in 1985. Depicting two figures balanced in a remarkable gravity-defying pose, Acrobats is a work of incredible simplicity and vitality. Haring, a quintessentially urban artist, always sought to engage the public directly, from his earliest chalk drawings in New York subway stations to his final mural in a maternity hospital in Monte Carlo. In its temporary home in Battery Park City, Acrobats continues Haring's enduring vision of inserting art into the environs of our everyday lives.

Artist Bio
Keith Haring was born in 1958 in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. In 1978 Haring moved to New York to study at the School of Visual Arts. In 1980 he took up Graffiti Art, decorating advertisements in New York subways with his marker pen. He worked in a number of different media including sculpture, posters, and painting, always incorporating his own distinctive, brightly-colored palette. As his art became more prominent in galleries and museums, he decided to make his work available to a broader audience by opening a Pop Shop in New York in 1986, and another in Tokyo in 1988. Through these shops he was able to sell Haring T-shirts, buttons, patches, magnets, and toys.

Haring's last solo show was at Gallery 121 in Antwerp (1989). Since his death in 1990, his work has been shown in the group shows Retrospective, The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (1997) and Sex Show, Galerie Jérôme de Noirmont, Paris (2002).

Keith Haring's Acrobats at Battery Park City is a collaboration between the Public Art Fund, the Keith Haring Foundation, and the Battery Park City Authority.

Special thanks to Deitch Projects, New York.

About the Keith Haring Foundation
The Keith Haring Foundation was established in 1989, one year before Haring's death at age 31. The Foundation supports AIDS-related and children's charities, and maintains the largest repository of materials on Keith Haring. In collaboration with museums, galleries, publishers and art education programmers worldwide, the Foundation is able to provide information and artwork to the public that might otherwise remain unexplored in archives.
About the Battery Park City Authority
The Battery Park City Authority is a public benefit corporation established by the state legislature in 1968 to develop and manage 92 acres of land at the southern tip of Manhattan across from the World Trade Center site. Battery Park City is home to the world renowned Winter Garden, the Irish Hunger Memorial, and the NYC Police Memorial. The Authority received the 2002 Doris Freedman Award for excellence in public art.

Keith Haring's Acrobats is located at Liberty Street and South End Avenue.
Nearest subways: R, W to Cortland Street; 4, 5 to Fulton Street.

click here to get directions from mapquest

I absolutely love this artist. He has some several public art pieces, performance pieces , paintings and sculpture.

Teresa Neal

Thread Designs

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Underwater Art

I saw this and really liked it.  The artist is Jason de Caires.  In May 2006 he gained international recognition for creating the world’s first underwater sculptural park in Grenada, West Indies.  His underwater sculptures are designed to create artificial reefs for marine life to colonize and inhabit.
His website stated that only about 10-15 percent of the sea bed has a solid enough substratum to allow reefs to form naturally.  In order to increase the number of reefs in these areas, the artificial reefs have recently been created from materials that are durable, secure and environmentally sensitive.  These reefs have been successful in that they have attracted coral growth which in turn support an entire marine ecosystem.
Here is his website if you want to check it out.  He has made over 400 life size sculptures that have been placed underwater.  I really like the fact that his art is serving a purpose.
-Heather herberg


Erik, the Chef at Little Bird, and the TITULARITY TROPHY. Erik is well deserving to be awarded for his undying efforts to keep it Titular in the kitchen!

Here is the trophy in its completion (yay!). Re-casting the hand with metal re-invorcement in the thumb was the way to go. By recommendation from Wood Shop Eric, I drilled into the base of the wrist and glued a threaded bolt with JB weld into the drilled hole (yes, to my surprise drilling into plaster was easy and didn't shatter the hand. Also I chose the JB weld but if I was to do it again I would use gorilla glue). To attach the hand to the plaque, I drilled through the front where I wanted the hand to go, then used a router to drill out the space for the nut to fit (insert technical wood shop term for this cut here, you can see this cut in the last picture of the back side of the plaque). To achieve the gold look to the hand originally I was hoping to gold leaf it, but getting gold leaf into the tiny crevices proved almost impossible. So I use Montana Gold spray paint and applied nearly 12 layers. NOTE: It is really important to try and apply very thin layers at a time and allow each layer to dry before applying the next. Otherwise, if you apply too thick
of a layer, the surface will dry and the paint underneath will remain soft/wet.

To make the wood plaque I purchased the wood at Michaels (the first attempt I cut my own from a found piece of wood and discovered it was a difficult type of wood to carve into). I purchased some NIJI carving tools at Art Media for 12/15 dollars which are rad, I'll definitely be using these again. I stenciled the text onto the board and carved out the letters with the carving tool. I ended up using a dremmel to clean up the letters after carving. Next, I wood burned the text to give it that black color. Then, I stained the board and finished it with a semi-gloss sealant. Lastly, I attached the hand to the board with a nut and socket wrench and voilà!
This project had it's challenges but I learned a lot through the process and ended up being very pleased with the final product! As was Erik who received the Titularity
Award! To present the award I came into the restaurant on a day I didn't work while everyone was on the line prepping and getting ready for dinner. I asked Erik for, "A moment of his time" which he later told me is usually follow by, "I will be leaving" or, "I need an extended amount of time off", but instead I handed him a plaque with a golden hand on it. To say the least he was shocked and very happy and gave me three hugs. BE TITULAR!


Friday, February 25, 2011

One of my favorite public projects- city planning in Ljubljana

The Path of Rememberance and Comradeship - The Green Ring, Ljubljana is also known as the Green Ring. This is a gravel paved foot path made for recreational purpose and it runs all around the city. It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Ljubljana. The entire path is around 33 kilometers in length. The path goes through both urban regions and the forests and the surrounding meadows as well. The path also runs along the course of barb wire fence. This fence also surrounded the city of Ljubljana during the time of the Second World War. This was constructed by the German and the Italian forces to prevent contacts of the city with its hinterland. This fence was guarded by 400 policemen and 1,300 soldiers. They used check the identity papers of the travelers going to and from the city. The visitors must take a walk along the Path of Rememberance and Comradeship - The Green Ring, Ljubljana.

The Path was completed in 1985. Since the liberation of
the city until 1962, 102 memorial octagonal stones were
laid along the line where the wire fence ran during the
occupation. These marked the positions of the bunkers of
the occupying army. The designer of the memorial stones
was the architect Vlasto Kopač. The PST is presently 4m
wide, almost 33 km long and covered with gravel. Along
the green area adjacent to the PST 7,400 trees of 49 tree
species have been planted. Landscaping was performed
by youth brigades and numerous volunteers who did more
than 350,000 hours of work. The Path of Remembrance and
Comradeship was proclaimed by a City Council decree in
1988 as a unique historical monument of landscaped nature
and is outstanding even by world standards. Based on an
idea by the architect Janez Koželj, PST has been fitted with
standard signposts, information boards, plaques and metal
floor markings, as well as flagpoles at the turn-offs.
The PST is also termed the Green Ring of Ljubljana
as it runs under the shade of trees that enclose it. The
name Green Ring was adopted by the society who, with
the tenacious work of volunteers, Želva (a company
employing disabled persons) and funds from Ljubljana
City Council, are successfully maintaining the PST.

LOVE JOY fountain

I took this picture last summer I just wanted to give everyone a feel of how this fountain looks when it's working.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Ghost of a Dream

The artists, Lauren Was and Adam Eckstrom collaborated under the name Ghost of a Dream to create sculptures out of discarded lottery tickets. Their focus is to create art based off of "dream desires."

Here's their website:

Bubble Gum street Art

British artist Ben Wilson uses squished pieces of bubble gum on sidewalks as his canvases. Given our latest project involves public art and installation, I figured he would be another good example of subtle intervention art. It might not be 3D, but I feel it is definitely something to consider.

I don't think this is a repost on this blog, but my apologies if it is.

Here are some links:
A Flickr gallery.
A brief article from the Huffington Post
BBC mini documentary

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Miranda July

Miranda July's interactive public art. so quirky and cute like her

Final Project: Public Art

Alone or in groups, we will make models for a site-specific public art project.

Celebrate, draw attention to, or critique the site. What inherent values does the site have? What is its history? Is there something about it that is threatened? Is there something undervalued you’d like to call attention to? Any or all of these should be considered. Will there be an interactive component? Will it be ephemeral? What materials will be used?

Step one: Make sketches & conceptual written plans

Step two: Make scale models & budgets, in hopes of convincing the rest of us it is realistic to make & valuable

Feel free to have a utopian vision...

Dates & Deadlines:

Weds 2/23         Visit Public Art Sites, discuss

Mon 2/28          Discuss ideas, Proposal Writing & Budget Demo 

Weds 3/2           Sites chosen, Sketches Due

Mon 3/7             Budgets & Proposals Due

Weds 3/9            Scale Models & Revised Proposals/Budgets due

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Neolithic Stone Age Goddess Discovered

While excavating for new construction near Amman, Jordan, a plaster and painted head of a Neolithic Stone Age Goddess was discovered buried several feet down. As workers were clearing boulders from a hole, they caught the glimpse of a bright green glass like substance. Upon further investigation they revealed the plaster figure head believed to be a fertility goddess of some sort. Archeologists estimate the piece to have been made between 6750-6250 BCE. It has been authenticated by leading Neolithic Archeologist Niles Greenhart from Bristol, England.
Upon release from the Jordanian government, the Goddess Sculpture will be sent to Bristol for further study. Of special interest is the green glass like substance the plaster head sits on.

Teresa Neal

Trophie photo by Matthew Lewallen

Dumb & Ugly For Life

After years of sifting through various layers of dirt and sediment, archaeologists finally uncovered a century old art piece that has come to be known as "Dumb String on Ugly Paper." This assemblage of string, paper and other various materials has intrigued and turned heads in disgust, causing some people to exclaim "No more!" and is looking create a new category of art in museums called Dugly.

The assemblage of paper, tape, and string evokes such a feeling of disgust that it is difficult to call this art. However, given the abstractions of the time, it is being called art regardless. One could assume that a small child may have constructed this bulbous crumpled paper on there day off of school. Or perhaps during a 5 minute break from it. The ability to interact with the sculpture does give it a sense of playfulness and one the sense of enjoyment, however, on its own it stands purely as a hodge podge of stuff.

- Enrico Macias-Zepeda

Monday Night Lecture With Sara Reisman 02/21/11

Sara Reisman is the curator for Public Art in New York City. She has been working with them for several years. She spoke about the process that goes into picking public art for a site. On average it can take 3 to 10 years. She showed several diagrams that she makes for each purposel. They include such things as whether it will be a permanent piece, contextual, interventionist, if it has to be site specific or performance art. She has done pieces in parks, schools, transit centers and other public areas. Sometimes her commissions must answer to additional criteria for their projects, such as if it has to be community based, or integrated into that specific area. Some of the problems with public art are maintenance, if the piece can be in an unobstructed area and seen properly. One issue that appeared in some of the video projects was that the owners of the salons were the video screens were placed, didn't even have the video on. She also stated that politics are involved in everything, and that each project is tied to some allocation.
There are also trends in public art such as Ecology, Technology, and currently Lighting is very popular. Overall she showed quite a large variety of different pieces from each category of Public Art. I enjoyed her lecture, and I was able to see how her job could be very frustrating at times.

Teresa Neal

Regional Arts & Culture Council

This is a really helpful site for the next project I thought everyone would like to check out:

Monday, February 21, 2011

First Thursday #2

This is a pair of pieces by Carol Benson that were on display at Black Fish Gallery this month. I chose to include both in my review, as the level of contrast from one another is so extreme it becomes complimentary.
On the left is "Styx", a free-standing additive sculpture constructed from wood an acrylic. It's many intersecting branches divides the considerable volume of the overall composition, creating geometric forms from the resulting negative space. It's dark and chaotic appearance imbues it with an allegorical quality, conjuring up thoughts of a dense and menacing forest.
To it's right is "Icara", another freestanding additive work constructed from acrylic on canvas and buckram (a stiff cloth made from cotton or linen). The materials are arranged in a semi-figurative manner, though the figure never fully emerges, leaving the appearance of a tattered dress having become suddenly animated. Where "Styx" employs a mess of geometric forms to produce a larger abstract form, "Icara" is made up of organic shapes, compiled to create a much more direct allegorical effect. "Styx" also embraces negative space, while "Icara" is a solid form. "Styx" is made from organic materials, "Icara" is constructed from woven fabrics.
The two monochromatic pieces are perfectly contrasting. Together though, they produce a sense of uneasiness. Their forms are off-putting. Viewing "Icara" through the branches of "Styx" gives the sense of stumbling into something haunted.
Uncovered in a subsequently abandoned archaeological dig, this ancient fertility statue was passed down the rungs of academia by disinterested intellectuals, eventually being donated to this reluctant PSU art student as scrap material. The tepid reception was met with snickers by the girls in his class.

"This is ugly as sin. Seriously, this culture sucked.", remarked Mr. Stewart.

An assemblage of clay and garbage, the work employs nature and materialism as it's subjects, and even themes of artificiality in femininity. The latter theme is invoked by a pair of crudely rendered breasts, attached to a plastic bottle.

"They're like something out of the margin of a sixth grade boy's math notes", one student remarked.

Most of the piece is treated with an industrial grey. The two creatures mounted below the breasts are notably mismatched. The dinasaur's face is incised, and lying flat on it's stomach. It has the rendering of a child's drawing. The serpent on the the other hand has the apearance of a Gary Larson illustration. The fact that it's haunched up in violent protest to the breasted bottle threatens to invoke a biblical theme. It's possible the work is intended to satirize traditionaly unfavorable views on femininity in material culture, and religion. When presented with this interpretation the students winced.

"I mean, I just don't want to give it that much credit. This thing, it's, it's realy dumb."
"Wow. balloons!"

I chose this location for the vantage point, but also for contrast between the items and their surroundings. I also chose cool (as in color temp.) colored balloons to help emphasise my replica. Two men and one woman encountered the displayed. Both men said "Wow, balloons!", while the woman ignored them.

Gabriel Dawe Thread Installations

These thread installations are crated by Gabriel Dawe and are always site specific. He uses more than 50 miles of string to create them and they are each absolutely amazing.

For her portfolio and more about her you can check out


-Amy Grider

Pre-Apocalyptic Art Found in Portland State Ruins

Found buried in the ancient ruins of Neuberger Hall, miraculously in perfect condition, this 3-dimensional sculpture dubbed "The Ticking Time Bomb", seems to be a narrative of the apocalypse of 2012. The artist, who is unknown, seems to depict in the assemblage, his or her premonition of the end of the world. And their prediction was correct. Nearly a year after this sculpture was constructed, the gigantic sea urchin robot, created by the US military as a weapon of mass destruction, escaped from the bottom of the ocean and rampaged the helpless community of Portland, OR and continued its path of destruction across the globe.

This deceivingly simple lanscape is loaded with symbolism. Not only does the unnaturally pink foam core represent the fragility of the earth's crust, but the orange cones and barriers depict Oregonians futile attempt to stop the monsters rampage through the streets. The meticulously placed plastic animals suggest the domination of farm animals after 2012 and a reference to the class novel of that time period Animal Farm.

Much of the artist's skill is evident in this sculpture. Much attention was placed on the pyramidal composition of the landscape.The artists was also obviously aware of the contrast between the heaviness of the black sea- urchin ball-monster and the lightweight foam core. It is safe to say that this could be one of the most influential sculptures of the early 21st century.

-Kristen Petsche

Theo Jansen

This artist makes incredible kinetic sculptures and thought anyone who hasn't seen them would really enjoy them. Theo Jansen is a Dutch artist that builds these creatures so that they are capable of moving independently using wind on the beach shore.

-Lindsey Dixon

“Venus de Dial”

Found in an abandoned house, on the outskirts of Olympia, “Venus de Dial” dates back to 1968. Mire Gume, active in the arts from 1949, made this sculpture as her last attempt in the arts, before committing suicide a month after. Utilizing the remains of her boyfriend’s trash, Gume created a masterpiece. Clearly, this assemblage of clay, a plastic bottle of Dial soap and a cereal cardboard becomes a reinterpretation of the “Venus of Willendorf”. The clay figures of a snake and a whale create a story of lost love, divided by land, while the dominance of the allegorical figure, represents her heroic triumph against the world of the living. The contrast in the materials, particularly between the found objects and the organic clay, create a reference to the ancient world. Having added breasts to the Dial soap bottle made for men, the artist created a female perspective, added to the male-dominated art world. Mire Gume was one of lesser known founders of the Chabaka Jara feminist art movement, which rooted the more commonly know Riot Grrrl movement.

Yevgenia Tsveleva

Archaeological Dig By 3D Art Class Uncovers the Dumb and Ugly

Art Students at PSU discovered during an archaeological dig an impressive 30 or more artifacts at a site they named the "Glory Hole". The group of Art Archaeologist has determined that the artist's intention for these artifacts was to create the Dumbest and Ugliest piece of work possible. With this information, the Archaeologist split into several groups each with varying opinions of what artifact they believed was most successful at being the dumbest and ugliest. An Archaeologist from the group that represented the dumbest of the dumbest and the ugliest of the ugliest was willing to share her analysis of their discovery.

"This assemblage of clay, cardboard and a Dial shampoo bottle was by far the dumbest and ugliest of the artifacts excavated from the site. The figure which appears to be the focal point, is a free standing found object that has been placed on top of a deconstructed macaroni and cheese box. The figure is constructed of a Dial bottle and juts out of the piece like a hideous monolith. The only modification to the found object is a pair of clay breast that have been superimposed on the front of the bottle. One colleague of mine described this figure as having "boobs drawn by a third grader", which accurately describes their form and realism. Placed at the foot of the boob monolith are two figures both made of clay. One of the figures seems to resemble a beached seal with a large fin across it's back, the other a snake with round, human like eyes on the top of it's head. Knowing that the objective of the artist was to craft something entirely dumb and ugly, these two figures really tie the piece together. Neither of them brings unity or harmony to the overall piece leaving the viewer confused, or wasting their time in trying to craft a logical explanation for their purpose when ultimately the purpose is nothing. Finally, the space that the piece utilizes is neither negative nor positive but has been determined to be a waste of space.

-Lindsey Dixon

The "Beer Witch," as it has become popularly known, is a crude assemblage of clay, string, beads, paper, and a discarded beer bottle. A crudely modeled figure sits awkwardly atop the bottle,while crumpled paper eyes stare blankly ahead. Below the bulbous nose, the figure seems to bite painfully on the bottle with a toothless mouth, while catfish-like whiskers stream behind. From the top of its tiny cranium, strings form a vague likeness of hair, with beads, or possibly pre-chewed food forming a lumpen tiara. Little harmony is achieved with these disparate elements. Indeed, it's a wonder it holds together at all.

The culture that produced this object has been the subject of much debate among amateur archeologists and art historians. Sophistication in materials and execution makes it unlikely to have been made by an adult, and certainly not a sober one. The most widely accepted current theory is that a primitive tribe of drunken children produced it as a religious object. Perhaps by coincidence, stories abound in rural New Jersey of a pre-teen cargo cult, scurrying between drainage culverts and abandoned shopping malls. It is possible the molding of clay activated the magic properties of this figure, as in the tribal "fetish" sculptures found in many pre-industrial cultures. In this way, the children could try to influence the gods. The "Beer Witch" could then be used to pray for health, to harm an enemy, or to cause another beer truck to crash.

Matt Hall

Dumb and Ugly Theory

Upon recent excavation in a now non-existent city which historical records show to be named Portland, an interesting discovery was found. The small three dimensional form provide many new clues into what life was like back in the 2000's thanks to carbon dating. Due to the use of styrofoam and plastic adhesive siding it will be preserved for years to come. Located next to the piece was a small inscription found on a degraded blackboard stating 'Dumb and Ugly' which scientists have now determined was to the goal to this piece. Rumors have always circulated about Portland State's program to end over population and now we have the missing link. Psychologists teamed up with artists on a government initiative. The theory of this top secret project was that the only real combat to over population was not children mandates of China, or sterilization of India, but instead a more obscure approach to make children so unhappy that future parent would not want to have any. The prototype was this children's toy so dumb and so ugly no child who ever received one would ever be happy. This idea is seen in the rushed-like cutting technique seen around the edges of the figure which no doubt took months for a machine to get just right. The lack of discernible features in the figures animal head made the 'animal' toy unable to relate to on a emotional level causing extra unhappiness for children. There seems to be a small leash attached to this toy with the idea that the child could walk it like a pet, but with no wheels or mobility features, similar frustration was again felt at having to drag it around. Millions were to be produced but somewhere along the way their budget was cut and the population continued to soar as children remained happy with cuter toys and parents continued to want them, which as we all know, is what lead to the end of their civilization. This object is now being held at Princeton's Department of Art and Archaeology for further study.

-Veva Campeau

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dumb and Ugly

After digging around for a while through thousands of years worth of intergalactic fecal matter, I stumbled upon a very intriguing artifact. At first, I did not know what to make of this unique figure. After numerous lab tests and much scientific research I have discovered that this abstraction was a sort of medal made for the most dominant species of its place of origin. It was generally worn like a wristband on some part of the species body (i.e. on an arm, leg, horn, etc...). Its bright color is pink to our eyes, but to the species from its place of origin the color is ever changing and even goes beyond our own visual spectrum of color. It is a very flashy piece and is sought after by every creature. Although it is likely that most of them never possessed one of their own.

Dawn Tan

Cuddly art and some wearable pieces by Dawn Tan

Dumb and Ugly

This small shrine was discovered in the excavation of a tiny Ksamil island off the coast of southern Albania. The shrine was made by cavemen who chiseled these rock figures. Two serpents stand in guardianship to protect a female figure in the middle that towers over them. This carving was created in ancient times when the island was overtaken by a tribe of female archers who overthrew the king and came into power by putting the men to work in the mines. To this day, the island is still filled with artifacts similar to these where females are worshipped and glorified in monuments. Serpents can represent guardianship but also vengeance.

Dumb and Ugly

This unknown artifact was uncovered from what appears to be the early twenty-first century. From the looks of it the intent seems to have been to create the most dumb and ugly sculpture possible. The monochromatic color scheme suggests a drab and lifeless side of the time period, yet the artist uses the lively image of each individual appendage to represent hope for what is yet to come. The vertically projected piece seems to be "staring" in one direction but the serpent-like sculpture seems to be moving in a direction away from it, suggesting possible change or a demand to branch off from the norm, much which had been occurring during the time period.

- Sarah Seitz

Dumb and Ugly

pastedGraphic.pdfToday was a absolutely fabulous day for being a archeologist.  My colleague and I found this sensational piece.   It has been decided due to the dinosaurs, that this piece is no less than two hundred and fifty million years old.  One can understand how lucky that we are to find something that is so well preserved.  You can tell that this piece had a good influence on Greek architecture due to the columns.  We find it so interesting that the little GI Joe, the Indian and the sheriff have all decided to take battle upon one and other instead of working together to kill the gigantic dinosaurs that are about to eat them.  It is vary easy to see that this piece originated in Tahiti, due to the little umbrella that once fit so comfortably in a cocktail.  The landscape is bare due to the fact that the large volcano on Tahiti has just erupted.  These where some of the only survivors.  This piece was brought to the United States on a boat 200 million years ago by Chief Nanapukit.  He loved it so much that he put it in a time capsule and buried it.
-Heather Herberg


This semi-figurative, representational piece, which I will call Elbone, recalls the form of a large bison or mammoth dinosaur from a time long ago. historians can tell us very little about where it comes from or what its purpose was. it is composed of foam, wood and spring. the juxtapositioning of the more industrial pink foam, the more organic wooden textured front  and the fibrous string brings a feeling of tension to an otherwise simplistic form.

The rough edges add another textural element and also bring into question if perhaps this item may have been created by a culture indigenous to the area, and makes us very aware of the process.  Elbone carries with it a very Post-modern feeling of displacement, ambiguity, uncertainty, and contradiction. The wood grain extending off of the wood horizontally cuts the viewer's eyeliner jarringly at the edges. As simplistic as Elbone is, the unexpected edges and unrealistic but semi-figurative proportions give both visual interest and provoke thought.

 Also, really hideous and stupid.

Sad I missed this day :( Looks like a lot o fun.

-adi dov

Art 'History' of "Hairy the Monster" Sculpture

Probably dating back to the Renaissance era, this piece by an unknown sculptor is clearly documentation of the fictitious battle scene from the novel "Hairy the Monster" by Francis Henshawe (born 1387 in Florence, Italy). As the story goes, the townspeople of Harstad, Norway, encountered an attack from a massive sea urchin-like creature that had quadrupled in size and had subsequently washed up on the shore of the Norwegian Sea. This sculpture is depicting the scene where the townspeople attempt to protect the city by controlling the monster with chains, guard animals, and unusual orange and white geometrical structures. This piece is extremely important in showing that the sculptor was also consciously aware of Florence's political situation at the time. With the rise of the Medici family growing more and more powerful in Florence, this piece is a symbol of the struggle between the townspeople of Florence and the overpowering government. While using one of the greatest novels ever written as a platform for popular controversy, this piece achieves in symbolically recognizing the current events of Renaissance history.

Olivia Serrill

Most Avid Reader Award

Here's my sister receiving her trophy- this picture was difficult to take since she is so goofy most of the time but you can see a small fraction of all the books she has on the sides.

Olivia Serrill

The Dumbest, The Ugliest

The Dumbest and Ugliest award went to this piece by Lexa Walsh. The piece is assembled of found objects including recycled paper, tape, and string. It was chosen because of its simple, minimalist content. The form is a freestanding slightly geometric assemblage that achieves simplicity with the absence of rhythm, variety, and unity among other things. The minimalist construction is visually uninteresting and plain with unseen space enclosed or consisting of crumpled paper. Little variety is achieved with the clear, glossy visual texture of the tape that covers the whole form, yet there is a hint of harmony created by its repeated pattern. Bland value over all allows the string to bring slight contrast as it introduces color, which acts as the focal point and directs the eye to follow it around the form. Scale and familiarity encourages kinetic interaction with the piece. Intended for the sole purpose of being dumb and ugly the common materials draws the viewer to experience the piece by picking it up, crumpling it, or squishing it's crumpled paper contents like a wad of unwanted class notes.

Michelle Caldwell