WASHINGTON, July 19, 2016 /PRNewswire/-- When artist Alison Sigethy applied for a public arts installation project at Theodore Roosevelt Senior High School last year, she thought she would be filling a small interior space with a glass sculpture. Instead, she recently completed Drop, an installation comprising suspended stainless steel orbs stretching over 40 feet across the outdoor courtyard of the school. It is her largest public art commission to date.
"I was surprised when I made it to the final round of proposals and I was asked to create a much larger outdoor art work, but also excited for the challenge," Sigethy recalls. Working with a team of architects, engineers, and school officials, the artist created a dramatic work of art for this newly renovated student space.
The site-specific design features 45 mirror-polished stainless steel orbs suspended from cables 28 feet above a terraced garden in the Rain Harvesting Courtyard of the school. The work follows the movement of water, as if recorded by stop motion photography, as it moves through the garden and into one of three cisterns delivering thousands of gallons of reusable water to the facility. "Alison Sigethy's Drop installation poignantly and elegantly translates the science of renewable resources in the water garden," remarked Sandy Bellamy, Management Analyst with the D.C. Department of General Services and head of the school's public arts installation project.
While this steel medium and larger scale are new to the artist, the subject matter is not. Sigethy is known for her environmental artworks and attention to issues of water conservation. She previously installed a series of creatures formed from salvaged building glass along the banks of the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers to call attention to the effect of human activity on local waterways, and she has plans for similar projects in the future.
Sigethy's philosophy regarding public art is one of approachability and interactivity. She hopes to build community by creating places where people want to congregate. "Public art anchors public spaces," she says, "by creating attractions and destinations within that space, forming an identity for the area, and generating ways to engage and delight visitors." How does she know when she has created a successful public arts piece? "To me, the most valid measurement is the smile factor."
A dedication of this new school space is expected in August.
About the Artist
Alison Sigethy is a professional artist who works out of her studio in the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, Virginia. She graduated from Marymount University in Arlington with degrees in interior design and art history. Today, her work focuses on issues such as ocean conservation, sustainability, ecology and education. She has exhibited her work nationally, along with appearances in American Craft Magazine, Christian Science Monitor, Washington Post and USA Today.
SOURCE Alison Sigethy