Size: Each element is 14ft x 7ft x 7ft / Material: Stainless steel, black granite and white granite / Location: North Bank Park, Columbus, Ohio, Greater Columbus Arts Council, The Columbus Arts Commission.
Photo credit: Dave Emory
One of the most striking sources for my conceptual framework with this project came through my understanding of the City of Columbus, its history, development and the current formation of the Downtown Columbus Stratgeic Plan. After pouring through loads of material, what surfaced as an incredibly significant and essential concept, was the idea of community. Throughout Columbus’s development, a deep affection for the City by its’ constituents have built the rise of interest and energy that is being embraced today. Personally, I felt this when I was there. It was such a pleasure to experience the people, places and insightful vision of the community from which stirred notions of inclusiveness, admiration, enjoyment and love for a place that the community of Columbus call home.
Beginning with deconstructing “community”, I started there.
I began to think of how to visually articulate such a complex idea in a rather abstract manner.
Quite simply, lips emerged as a physical reference to a gesture, a kiss. A kiss is a common physical display of affection that involves the lips.
I wished to create a form that not only embodied the fabric of community, but suggested the engagement of times past as well as reaching for those possibilities of the future. I wanted to create a work that also reflected back to the viewers, a possibility of inclusiveness where each is part of a whole, and appreciated as such. After much observation and modeling of the lips to successively produce the moment of a mutual kiss, I really became grounded and excited in the success of this project.
Many of us remember the moment and place of a first kiss or we sweetly admire the action of affection between a parent and child, love ones and each other. It is a gesture of love, friendliness, fondness, and of affection. A kiss can be freely given just as an experience can be had spontaneously. Parks and open space provide the arena for playful fun and a potentiality for a release of spirit.