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Project Title Nourish
Project Completed 2022
Project Partners Martin Donlin, Poet Laureate of the United States Joy Harjo, Brett McDanel and Anton Morton
Project Media Powder Coated Aluminum, Art Glass, DMX Programmed LED Lighting, Integrated Concrete Hardscape
Nourish represents the seed that is knowledge, the universe and the natural world; available at your local library. Inscribed in the glass centerpiece are the words “You are this universe and this universe is you” (Excerpt from Remember, 1952 by US Poet Laurette Joy Harjo) representing the power that lies in a seed and the library. The form and its orientation are compliment the building architecture while providing fodder for visitors both inside and out. At night, the form and glass are activated by separate lighting installations which are programmed with multiple themes on an easy to operate interior access touch panel.
The commission wanted the sculpture/installation to activate user experience inside and outside of the building and to create a defined destination. Designs built around familiar and overused library tropes were highly discouraged in favor of ideas that creatively explored the expansion and dissemination of knowledge, or ideas that illuminated traditional roles of storytelling, or both. The sculpture was required to work with the architecture and landscape architecture to create a welcoming community space for all residents and visitors. No specific medium or method of fabrication was required, but all materials, finishes, and design elements were required to be durable and long-lasting and require no special maintenance.
During project development we collaborated closely with the architecture team and library team. We worked with architecture to design a landscape that would help the installation feel grounded. The result yielded an integrated hardscape with landscape berms that flank the approaches to the installation. We coordinated for our hardscape to be completed at the same time as other building hardscapes; months ahead of sculpture installation. Nourish is activated after dark through programmable DMX lighting that illuminates the form separately from the glass. We worked with library stakeholders to design several different lighting themes that can be altered throughout the year to coordinate with special events like literacy month; in addition to three standard color changing scenes that can be used any time.
This project sits at one of the most highly trafficked intersections in Oklahoma City and is adjacent to a new rapid transit metro line. It is a “Selfie” magnet and, accordingly, it receives an immense amount of foot traffic. The robust nature of the build is intended to provide durability and longevity for the installation. All elements are on risen hardscapes (Lighting and form) to prevent vehicle and lawn maintenance incidents. The aluminum form will never rust and has a triple architectural powder coat. The art glass is tempered and safety laminated, the lighting components are IPX9 rated (High temp/high water pressure) and the engineering will allow the installation to resist 230 MPH winds. This project was made possible by the City of Oklahoma City Percent for Art Program.
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