Medium: High strength aluminum, painted
Dimensions: 294 x 132 x 360 in. (746.8 x 335.3 x 914.4 cm)
Signed: north side, near base of straight vertical side
Marks: Artist's initilals BW are sodered into base.
Credit Line: Commissioned by the Iowa Art in State Buildings Program for the Black Engineering Builiding. In the Art on Campus Collection, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
Iowa State University, Black Eng. Building, South courtyard
After visiting Black Engineering Building and becoming familiar with the associated studies and activities as well as the natural space, the artist, Bruce White, conceived the idea for this sculpture. Focusing on material deformation, the sculpture "Carom" was developed by manipulating (bending, cutting, slicing, stressing, and twisting) a single sheet of high strength aluminum.
The outer edge of the upright has a diagonal slice at an angle to both the surface and the edge, creating a sharp curled "burr" reminiscent of the cutting burrs that sometimes occur while shearing thin metal. This accent is intended as a relief to the broad surfaces; it also relates to the acute negative voids where the narrow strips join the large units.
Carom was created to give the impression of manipulating tensile strengths (bending, cutting, slicing, stressing, and twisting) of a single sheet of high-strength aluminum. The form is a rectangle sliced nearly through lengthwise twice, search cut from opposite directions, to form a narrow strip down the center. The two large outer planes were then pulled apart and twisted in opposite directions to form the upward narrow spiral. The large horizontal member was folded and the surface planes allowed to shift at the outer end, creating a configuration with a beveled knife-like edge. The spiral connects and stabilizes the horizontal and vertical units. White based this abstract design on the reconfiguring and modeling that takes place daily inside the engineering buildings that surround Carom.
Sculptor Bruce White's pro affiliation before retirement was University Research Professor, Studio Sculpture, at the School of Art, College of Visual and Performing Arts, Northern Illinois University. He obtained his advanced education at Columbia University, New York City. Select public art commissions include: The Indianapolis Museum; Illinois State Museum; City of Chicago Capital Development Board; Rockford College; Purdue University; Art on Campus Collection, University Museums, Ames, Iowa.