Centennial Sculpture Installation Delayed

In honor of Hockaday’s centennial year, Upper School fine arts and math students set out to create a sculpture to hang in the science building, but the estimated installation date in August 2014 has passed and the sculpture has yet to be installed.

Visual Arts Department Chair Susan Sanders first approached glassblower Carlyn Ray to work on the project in the spring of 2013. After a meeting with the administration, the project was approved.

“We worked with architects to define the parameters and reinforce building specifics to be able to install,” Sanders said.

In the fall of 2013, Sanders and Ray introduced the project to Upper School students in order to inspire them to collaborate and help develop the design of the piece.

After Upper School art classes like Advanced Studio Art designed various plans for the sculpture, the class of 2014 reviewed over 25 entries and voted on which design they liked the most. As soon as the initial design was chosen, Ray worked with several Upper School math classes to further define the geometric nature of the forms that had been chosen.

While the overall support structure was designed in collaboration with Upper School students, all Hockaday students, faculty and staff were invited to create unique glass pieces to be fitted within the skeleton of the sculpture.

All of the glass has been fused and is ready for incorporation into the sculpture. However, Ray and her team encountered delays in finding the right structural engineer for such a non-traditional project.

“We got a little held up with the engineering,” Ray said. “We are figuring out the different strengths of the shapes, nuts and bolts.”

Ray brought on Amy Patrick, a structural engineer and Hockaday alumna, to help establish structural stability for the installation of the sculpture last spring.

In order to be able to hang the sculpture, the team still needs specifications for measurements and weight for how it will be installed into the designated space in the science building. After this stage is completed, the only thing left is the placement of the glass.

The team hopes to have the sculpture hung by the end of the summer of this year.

Some AP Studio Art students, like senior Leah Cohen, wish that the sculpture could be hung sooner.

“We had a lot of classes dedicated to the sculpture,” Cohen said. “I really hope that it goes up eventually to see it in future years.”

– Katie O’Meara