• McClaine Wellem | Staff Writer

Statue spreads her wings

GC has installed a new sculpture between Beeson Hall and A&S, a 12-foot-tall stainless steel piece called “Spreading Her Wings” by artist Mike Roig. President Dorman held an unveiling ceremony on Feb. 8.

“This art piece is a symbol of what we do here,” said President Steve Dorman. “We help students spread their wings and accomplish the things that they want to accomplish in life, while being all that they can be.”

The sculpture is a kinetic piece inspired by the movement of kimonos, moving with the wind to insinuate taking flight. At night, light hits the statue so that when set in motion, the light-refracting stainless steel presents a constantly shifting display of shimmering reflections.

“While it moves physically, I also think it is moving in the sense of the thinking behind it,” said university architect Michael Rickenbaker.

Roig was one of 29 artists who submitted proposals to the public arts committee in hopes of having their work displayed on GC’s campus. While selecting a piece, the committee mentioned how they wanted to highlight GC’s history of being a leader in women’s education, a quality that resonated with Roig.

“I knew that this college had a history of being a women’s college,” Roig said. “I feel very privileged in the age of the #Metoo movement to be some old white guy that gets to make a positive statement about women and their coming of age and them taking their own prominence in the world.”

Roig has several kinetic pieces displayed throughout the state of Georgia, one in Cumming and another at Brenau University in Gainesville, Ga.

“Spreading Her Wings” is the third piece of art to be introduced to GCs campus. The first piece, called the “Kernel,” by Marc Moulton, which was installed in 2012 between Russell Auditorium and Parks Hall, and the second is the “Edgar Heap of Birds,” installed in 2013, which pays tribute to the Trail of Tears.

“I hope there are others to come behind it,” Dorman said.

Dorman said GC hopes to continue its efforts to inspire and promote creative thinking by installing several new pieces in the years to come.

“I believe that campuses, like sanctuaries, ought to be these places that when you walk on to them, your mind is elevated a little bit,” Dorman said. “Your thought is elevated a little bit. You aspire to think about the bigger questions of life.”

Photo by McClaine Wellem | Staff Writer

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