Riverbed - CODAworx

Client: Department of General Services Percent for Art

Location: Washington, DC, VA, United States

Completion date: 2022

Artwork budget: $20,000

Project Team


Gary Coulombe

Carpenter and Craftsman

Philip Jacobs

Project Manager for Construction (Contractor)

Doug Dorner

Capital Construction Services


Riverbed is a 3D wall sculpture made out of wooden river stones, with mirror inlay. This has been installed in Randle Elementary school in Washington, DC. I liked the idea of using wood to connect viewers to nature, and also to provide a tactile interest. I implemented mirror to provide movement, water-like reflection, and to bring the viewer further into the piece, thus further into nature.


I proposed a 3D wall sculpture created out of wood with mirror inlay, resembling a riverbed of wooden pebbles and rocks, with reflective sparkles of water. The goal was to invite the viewer into exploring nature. The viewer is further pulled into the artwork, by catching glimpses of their reflection with small circles of inlayed mirror throughout the piece. Wood provides natural beauty, while mirror provides the light, movement and reflection inspired by water.


I was selected by the Department of General Services in DC to be commissioned for this piece. I communicated closely with DGS. I hired a woodworker to fabricate the wooden stones and drill-press the inlay circles for the mirror. After I stained, varnished and inlayed the pieces of mirror in the wood, I arranged them on a wood foundation. Another member of my team fabricated the foundation and steel frame. Once we assembled and completed it, we crated the piece and shipped it to Washington DC to my installers. It was installed at Randle Highlands Elementary School in August 2022. The final measurement is 7'Wx6'.6" H.

Additional Information

Location of installation changed, and design changed to eliminate negative space at top per request from rendered drawings.