Medium: Steel and limestone
Credit Line: Gift of the artist. In the Art on Campus Collection, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
Iowa State University, Christian Petersen Art Museum
Object Number: U2019.261ab
Most of my visits to Ames inspire me, not to mention the free time in the evenings without my usual family obligations, to draw.My stay while working on the Marston Musesled me to think about Marston, the use of the figure and monument.I made the attached sculptural model with found materials from the Marston Hall renovation, minus the bronze of the figure. The basic notion of my model is that"monument" often glorifiesachievement,often rightfully so,but doesn’t represent struggle to accomplish what ever notable character or creation literally being displayed on a pedestal in the form of a given person.So I wanted to literally stand that model on its head, and have asense of struggle, real hardship present, and to have the figure support the achievement,in this case, an ironI-beam for Marston's wonderfully engineered structures, such as the water tank(harkening the EiffelTower).The figure rests on a terra cottatile, a simple symbolof the earthand reference to his miraculousterra cotta and steel roof structure in Marston Hall, as well as a tributeto ChristianPetersen/Art on CampusCollection, a true foundation for all that is art on campus. The plate belowis ballast, with the letter "F" cut into it for identificationand placement in the Marston structure (I thought the "F" was also fate,and my initial).
-Francis Miller, Conservator and artist