Double Entendre

Submitted by Bruce Gray

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Client: Doubletree Hotel

Location: Burlingame, CA, United States

Completion date: 2012

Artwork budget: $6,500

Project Team

Architect

Brent Lynch

HFS Concepts 4

Artist

Bruce Gray

Sculpture by Bruce Gray

Overview

“Double Entendre” (75x42x32) is a free standing curvy abstract sculpture which is constructed in rolled sections of 1/4″ steel plate. This sculpture was commissioned for the lobby of the Doubletree Hotel in Burlingame, California. (Near San Francisco Airport) It is powder coated in a rich bronze color. Double Entendre combines a simple elegant interaction between the two different curves and the result is sophisticated yet playful and fun to look at.

Goals

The architecture and design firm HFS Concepts 4 contacted me about this commission. The goal was to have a combination of several individual elements joined in unison to form one integrated and aesthetically pleasing form. This needed to not only fit with the color and decor of the existing hotel lobby, but be accessible to a wide range of people of all ages and traveling from all corners of the world. It also had to be durable and able to hold up to the frequent touching by visitors. The sculpture has received many accolades and is a prominent part of the guest experience in the hotel lobby. The client is very pleased with the sculpture.

Process

When HFS Concepts 4 contacted me about this commission, they had a very clear direction on what they wanted for this sculpture. I was supplied with a sketch of a curved sculpture using 3 individual elements. They allowed me the freedom, and trusted my judgement enough to let me alter this concept as I saw fit. I had previously built another commission for them, which they loved, so they were very open to letting me be the creative force they were looking for to create this project. I started off by going to a large machine shop where I supervised the exact rolling shapes of five large curls to pick from as needed for the final sculpture. After playing around with dozens of combinations, I found an incredibly beautiful form and balance between two particular pieces. I could not bring myself to alter it further. The client wanted three pieces used, so I stopped work and took some photographs to send them. They were so pleased, the three piece idea instantly became a non-issue. At that point I did the rest of the welding and grinding and completed the project.

Additional Information

I really loved making this sculpture. It is great when the client trusts the artist's skills and judgement enough to let them make important decisions or design changes that may not have been planned. I had the pleasure of working with Brent Lynch at HFS Concepts 4 on this project, and he was great to work with, from start to finish. In the end, they got an amazing work of art that went way beyond the initial concept.