Ancient Muses: Archaeology and the Arts

By John H. Jameson; John E. Ehrenhard et al. | Go to book overview

8
Reflections on
the Design of a Public
Art Sculpture for
the Westin Hotel,
Palo Alto, California

David Middlebrook

I have always been interested in forgotten people, in the outsiders, the ancient tribes, and Native Americans. Step in Stone (plates 18 and 19) measures 21 feet, 6 inches high by 18 feet wide and weighs 17.5 tons. Completed in 2000, it towers above the El Camino Real in Palo Alto, California, across from the Stanford University campus. This piece, featured in the book Artifacts (Finn 2001b), which is about technology and material culture in Silicon Valley, is a statement of anthropology as well as art. The stone came from the Cascade Mountains in the northwestern United States. At the tiered sculpture's base are three large basalt timbers that lean on each other to form a tripod. On the underside of two of the tripod columns are carved renditions of 30,000-yearold cave paintings found in Lascaux in southern France. A short piece of basalt caps the base structure, which reaches approximately 12 feet. The next tier is a hollow granite cube perched atop the tripod on one of its corners. The sculpture's crown is a bronze blue patinated three-dimensional parallelogram that weighs 200 pounds. The sculpture is reminiscent of the Greek letter π, used in geometry. I spent an entire year fabricating the stone and bronze structure.

The design is at the core of my being. I was thinking about how quickly the United States has downplayed the integrity of primal art. The work was inspired by the Lascaux cave paintings. At my studio near Los Gatos, I projected transparencies of those images onto the full-scale maquette for the basalt base and played around with the shapes and textures. It was an intense experience. I was virtually in a trance. I was imagining myself as a caveman. The piece uses

-82-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Ancient Muses: Archaeology and the Arts
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 247

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.