Memorial Garden Cross

Submitted by James Flanagan

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Client: St. Margaret's Episcopal Church

Location: Baton Rouge, LA, United States

Completion date: 2019

Project Team

Artist

James Flanagan

Liturgical Consultant

The Rev'd Tommy J. Dillon II

St. Margaret's Episcopal Church

Overview

Design and build a Celtic Cross for a memorial garden on the grounds of the church. I was given a size limit of 41″ x 54″. Since the project is outdoors, I needed to take into account the thickness and grade of the material.

Goals

I wanted to reflect upon how a church's congregation is connected, and more specifically how this connection could be represented within a memorial space. The interweaving and continuous flow of a celtic knot is an ideal representation for this connection.

Process

I decided to use layers of stainless and carbon steel to tie the cross in with the colors of the surrounding tiles and stone. I used a beautiful, old, and rustic piece of 1/2" thick carbon steel for the base layer of the cross, and added layers of 1/4" stainless steel to contrast with the earthy rust tones. The first thing I wanted you to notice from a distance was the darker body of the cross. As you move through the garden and get closer, the smooth and shiny stainless layers will reveal themselves creating both visual and contemplative refection. This state of reflection is the essence of a memorial garden. Finally, by incorporating the St. Margaret's Shield into the bottom of the cross, a sense of community was instilled into the project.