Client: Vander Mey Residence
Location: Ocala, FL, United States
Completion date: 2010
Koontz &amp; Company
Jancik Arts International, Inc.
Jancik Arts Intenational, Inc.
Oak Branch sculpture measures 18' wide x 16' deep x 11' high. It is comprised of hand forged bronze skin or “bark” wrapped over a bronze pipe armature. Each of the 500 leaves consist of cast bronze profiles that are filled with German Antique stained glass.
Interior Designer David Gadlage of Koontz & Company had the vision to request and commission from us a custom sculpture for his client that would "draw the beauty of the outside environment into the pole constructed home". Never before had we had the privilege of integrating, to such a degree, nature with a manmade structure. The rolling hills of the property's thoroughbred horse farm with massive live oaks and 4 board creosote fences was a delightful palette with which to work. The clerestory windows at the peak of the structure simply invited an oak branch to reach into the space, affording natural light to illuminate the 500 stained glass leaves.
There was a concerted effort among interior designer, metal and glass designer (myself), client, and craftspeople in order to realize such a project. Once the suggestion of an oak branch reaching into the space was introduced, the idea was then transformed into a small scale model of not only the sculpture, but of a section of the house as well. This created the luxury to view in a three dimensional presentation while showing proportion, something which is often hard to read (for client and professional alike) off of paper. Metalsmiths also used the model to scale the large artwork, whereby simplifying construction and interpreting the art more easily. The model also served as a reminder to the client of what the end result would eventually be, even while project was in the ugly duckling stages of construction.
There is always the practical side of engineering a sculpture of this size, particularly one hanging overhead. In order to transport and enter the piece into the house and install, we designed and built limbs to mechanically attach and detach from the main branch. Bolts are hidden within the "bark". We also elected to put in place redundant safety airline stainless steel cables. These not only support the weight of the sculpture, but also prevent any swaying movement.