Client: Lancaster Public Art
Location: Lancaster, PA, United States
Completion date: 2020
Artwork budget: $65,000
Outer Golly—a white wobbling 400-ft fence surrounding a playground, dotted with discarded machine parts and tools, bits and bobs, odds and ends, and various knick-knackery: a cosmic array of fence pickets. The humorous collection of objects each has its own story to tell.
Culliton Park, Lancaster, PA
4’ x .25’ x 400’
Powder-coated steel & cast iron
It's as if we lifted a spindle from every fence in Lancaster and a discarded part from every machine shop.
Geller’s process always begins with stakeholder and community engagement which could include learning about the area's history, gaining insight into the community’s vision for the site, and brainstorming about what would enrich and bring together their diverse community.
Collaboration between Geller and the welders at Shrock Fabrication.
In his public art practice, Matthew Geller’s participatory sculptures become one of the building blocks that make a space a destination. As such, the work activates the site and promotes interaction among visitors, often creating intimate moments in a singularly public space. Part of his work’s success is that it is physically experiential: viewers understand that there is a place for themselves in it. His sculptures enable moments of respite and delight, befitting the site's functional and visual context. He purposefully uses materials from the everyday environment creating a level of connection to the familiar while highlighting elements of awe and beguilement. The idea is to surprise while fostering the sense of an inclusive community around an unlikely object or location, creating a micro public square or landmark. By considering behavioral design and incorporating dynamic elements activated by people and changes in the weather, the resulting work is in constant flux. Ultimately, the artwork’s goal will be to engender a sense of wonder, enhancing the community and visitor experience.