Unum - CODAworx


Location: Santa Rosa, CA, United States

Completion date: 2023

Artwork budget: $295,000

Project Team


Gizmo Art Production


Blessing Hancock

Skyrim Studio Inc


Undulating stainless steel light sculpture defines city center. Unum by Blessing Hancock is a large scale undulating metal sculpture incorporating 32 languages in the form of words and phrases weaved in seamlessly using laser jet cutting technology. Sitting proudly in the city center at 12’ high and 15’ wide, the sculpture utilizes key words and phrases submitted by members of the local community to showcase the diversity of people living in the area. This piece is made up of steel framework, laser cut stainless steel word panels and houses a custom internal LED lighting system. Custom light work inside of the frame casts shadows of the words through their cutout patterns onto the ground surrounding the piece. “Unum”, meaning “oneness” or “togetherness”, has already become the centerpiece of the Old Town Square in Santa Rosa, and will surely continue to serve as a symbol of unity amongst the communities of Santa Rosa.


The artist wanted the piece to reflect the cohesive atmosphere; therefore it is a continuous, unbroken form. It invites you to walk through it and ideally be changed by the experience. The story it will tell on its surface is not yet written, as it will come about through a community engagement process. The sculpture explores how language and form can be combined into contemporary art.


The entire city of Santa Rosa CA were invited to contribute phrases and languages that represented their place in the community and Unum captures the spirit of that by incorporating those community contributions into the final wording and placement within the piece. Gizmo worked closely with artist Blessing Hancock to develop this sculpture by translating her vision into 3d Rhino designed models that were then engineered to use the outer skin as the structure of the sculpture. Gizmo then constructed custom single-point LED light fixtures to illuminate both the interior of the sculpture, as well as project the words crisply onto the surrounding plaza. All parts were cut at Gizmo's studios, and all welding and finishing were completed in house as well. Orbital sanding gave the undulating design a consistent finished look, and custom footings were designed to also serve as cane guards.

Additional Information

The work is one of over a dozen collaborations between Blessing Hancock, Skyrim Studios, and Gizmo Art Production.