Client: Sculpture Tour Salina
Location: Salina, KS, United States
Completion date: 2021
Paulo Silva Art & Design
While our American pioneer story is often harsh, unfair and littered with deadly mistakes, there are blessings, beauty, goodness and godliness within its complex greatness.
I was inspired by a time in American history that was deeply troubled (like today), with hardships and cruelty, conflict and conquest. Yet, we are blessed with an imperfect but good country, of good people making progress over ignorance and healing open wounds.
I wanted to create a piece to suggest the experience, the harm, the bad and the good, the spirit and the blessings “rolled” into one image.
I found a vintage wagon wheel that may possibly have transported people westward, encountering original inhabitants whose land they sought for themselves, as well as challenging environmental conditions. The blessings of moisture was easily depicted in a cloud. Little wheels have the easy ride following the rough-going.
One day we will be brave enough to dialogue toward historical truth. The justice however, may simply be too complex and contain little satisfying resolution. Perhaps we should first learn to accept that we live in a beautiful yet imperfect, ever changing world.
“Rollin…” is an effort to suggest the rough surface we live on, the wounds below and the hope above.
The work is non-commissioned yet still had to appropriately satisfy wishes for historical and cultural context of a mid-western town.
My work was to exhibit in an arts-on-the-streets public art program and therefore it was subject to committee selection for appropriate expression, civic acceptance and durability.