Century Rock ~1991

“Out beyond wrongdoing and right-doing there is a field. Ill meet you there.” ~Rumi

Before the business of public art management was well defined, the artist worked independently to execute and install the work. In 1991 Cleveland Public Art, provided an RFP invitation to create a piece for the campus of University of Akron on the Buchtel Common. I was teamed with Pat Schmidt, an architect, who relegated the creative process to me. The site was a campus common paved in concrete. Brick buildings lined the passageway and a small island of grass existed as a patch of green space. I identified a graffiti rock on campus and learned it was an icon from the founding alumni association of 1891. I recognized this was an appropriate metaphor and proposed a new stone icon funded by the same group of people. The grass island was chosen to locate a foundation for “Century Rock” commemorating the 100th anniversary of the alumni association.

To my great good fortune I went to Kotecki Monuments, a family owned memorial stone company in Cleveland. Mr. Kotecki personally helped me to choose a six ton glacial bolder from his yard. Together we set up cutting the stone in two and polishing the symmetrical hemispheres for the sculpture installation.

The procedure took all winter and after the spring thaw the foundation was poured on the island. To create a flat base one end of the bolder was sheered and placed forty feet beyond this grass field. Spacing the polished stones a shoulder width apart created a division for a rubber pathway providing a contrasting surface to the hard concrete pavement. Walking through the bolder separation I engraved a series of horizontal marks to align the self, offering a physical sense, stepping forward on ones own path of discovery. Tall prairie grass planting surrounds and catches the movement of air offering insight with the present moment, creating a focal point of intention for centering the individual and the environment.

The $5000.00 budget was spent entirely on the sculpture and instillation but working with Mr. Kotecki was a priceless gift. His generosity and understanding transcended any financial gain and I remember him with warm admiration.