Client: Sculpture on the River Market
Location: Little Rock, AR, United States
Completion date: 2020
Artwork budget: $58,750
Metal fabrication/lighting coordination
Cracker 8 Projects, Inc.
Sculpture on the RIver Market
Juried Fine Art Show
In “Little Rock,” two children look upward at the same star in openness, wonder and hope representing a sign of racial equality for the future of the city. One of the children points upwards with his arm at an angle of 23.5 degrees, the exact angle of the tilt of the earth. A circumference of stainless steel reaches overhead with an LED light above which illuminates the piece from dusk until dawn. The sculpture measures 10’ high, 12’ wide, and 4’ deep, and is placed on the southeast corner of the City Hall grounds across from a performance hall. The mixed media sculpture incorporates silicon bronze with verdigris patina, stainless steel, cold-rolled steel, and concrete.
The goal of the 2019 Sculpture on the River Market Competition was to create a three-dimensional, durable, easily maintained, and free-standing permanent outdoor sculpture for the city of Little Rock serving as a testament to the future of the city. The commission was awarded from a field of 37 proposals and selected first by the public and then juried from 7 finalists. Artists were asked to address engineering, construction, installation, and maintenance standards. The winning artist was required to submit a stamped structural engineer’s drawing on the sculpture itself.
The process begins with a signed contract and approval of a rough sketch which is then further refined in working with the client. After a mutually agreed upon concept, the artist creates 3-D sketch and maquette and then works with the client to refine the process and reach a design agreement. Then a waste mold is made of the clay maquette and wax is poured. From this a digital enlargement is made and milled out of foam. This is a scaled and exact enlargement of the original maquette. Next, the artist sands into the foam to add and refine details. An oil-based clay is applied in several layers as the artist carves and sculpts again. After final approval by the client, a mold is made and shipped to the foundry for the bronze casting. The sculptor visits the foundry for approval of the work and will return again to proof the patina. After completion, the bronze is shipped to the client for installation.
Winner of the 2019 Sculpture on the RIver Market Fine Art Sculpture Show and Sale. Dyer got the idea for her 10' high by 12' wide by 4' deep sculpture after viewing the courthouse site and researching the civil rights history of Little Rock, Arkansas. As a licensed commercial architect, Theresa Dyer was able to "see" the space in 3-D and imagine the possibilities. Her background called for collaboration with many participants: structural engineer, fabricator, foundry, metal fabricator, patineer, and of course, the client(s).