Artist: Paul Vexler
Artist Statement: "The five sculptures that I have created for the Student Fitness Center are intended to evoke the rhythm and grace that is so often displayed in sports, dance, and physical conditioning in general. The wood ribbons that are used to create the forms can be shaped in an infinite number of ways. There are also an infinite number of shapes that they will not make because the materials will only allow bending in certain directions. This is not unlike the human body. The wood creates very graceful shapes because it distributes the bending stresses evenly, without kinking. The sculptures are hollow and light and have given me a greater insight into why things are shaped the way that they are. When connecting two sides and two edges, the shape of the thickened ribbon is a function of the individual shapes of its components. Straight is a very special case among a myriad of possibilities.
From me, the best thing about these sculptures is what I have learned about the process of creating them. The double helix took me totally by surprise and still does. I would never have predicted that it would be as strong a statement as it has turned out to be. I realilze now that I should consider more seriously the interaction of two or more independent shapes. Until now, my work has explored single shapes in an attempt to simplify my life and my work. I believe that I will have to reconsider that position.
As for the sculptures themselves, I hope that they are enjoyed by all who encounter them. I recently saw a movie in which a famous art critic stated that all art deceives the viewer, in one way or another. I disagree. You have here, five hollow pieces of bent and laminated wood, and I'm not lying."
Location: Walt Price Student Fitness Center
Related Information: EvCC set aside 1/2 of 1% of construction costs to fund this project, beginning with a call to artists. Three artists were selected to develop concept proposals and Paul Vexler was chosen to commission site specific work. Vexler had previously loaned 3 wood sculptures entitled "Whitehorse Helix" to the college and these were exhibited in the Whitehorse critique space.