“Hydro” Artist Nancy Selvage

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Client: Nancy Selvege - Artist City of Lowell, MA

Location: Lowell, MA, United States

Project Team

Artist

Nancy Selvage

Lead Fabricator

Gene Silva

Amaral Custom Fabrications

Overview

16 foot tall, freestanding, stainless steel depiction of the power and flow of water splashing over an ancient industrial water-wheel turbine. Critical to our industrial past, these types of turbines provided power in driving our earliest mechanized development. “Hydro” pays homage to a long dismantled dam on the confluence of two rivers in Lowell, Massachusetts. Lowell is one of the very first centers of industrialization in all of the United States.

Goals

Re-creating the flow of moving water in stainless steel tubing, required attention to detail and a high degree of craftsmanship to maintain the organic curvatures needed to be convincing. Re-created in a non digitized, 3D environment at full scale, involved the use of 2D digitization, and creative blacksmithing of metal in real time.

Process

Seaming together 2D generated shapes, then hand shaping stainless steel tubing to apply to edges, required a gift of eye - hand coordination, and an intense knowledge of how metals work.