Pine and black paint
This sculpture is a tribute to the poet e.e. cummings, whose gravesite
is nearby. The complex union of the visual and aural in cummings
poetry, his strong sense of design and unconventional use of typography,
and his playful placement of words across the page all suggested a sculptural
interpretation to me. I was interested in transforming the poems into
objects that engage us physically as we move around them. Through this
sculpture, I sought to transpose the horizontal breaks and distinctive
rhythms of his poetry into three dimensions.
I was also curious to see in what ways an outdoor context would enrich
how we read his poems. cummings poetry often celebrates an intense
encounter with nature. In the setting of Forest Hills, viewers can connect
with the beauty and spirit of nature while actively exploring and reading
the poems. By placing these poems in this setting I hope to generate a
dialogue between word and object, image and reality. I hope the poet would
My first piece at Forest Hills, Skyboats,
was a small fleet of translucent boats suspended in a grove of pines.
It grew out of earlier work using boats. In the context provided by the
cemetery, the group of vessels sailing through trees gained new meanings.
In contrast, this years sculpture was inspired by the particular
environment of Forest Hills. It celebrates the life and work of a person
who is buried here. The sculpture also responds to the physical layout
of Forest Hills, the maze-like network of roads and paths that make it
almost impossible to find e.e. cummings grave. It offers a kind
of visual pathway guiding visitors to the poets grave.
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