High Fivin’ the Universe


They say that when we release a photo on Facebook or publish a written work on-line that it will be “out there” forever floating in cyberspace. While it is an exciting thought that our images and words may possibly be enjoyed by future citizens or even aliens, I recently took part in a different kind of eternity that had a much deeper meaning for me. A local education foundation I work with decided to fund a project creating a symbol for an area school in the form of a sculpture. It would represent their program and would be placed near the front entrance involving staff and students. An artist from my area met with students and came up with a design that would challenge them to learn welding, shaping, and polishing glass skills as part of the process. There were 12 submitted designs and each incorporated the shapes of several pieces of an old steel bridge that was retired, cut up, and donated to various artists. The final design features two curving arrows extending skyward and was aptly named, “Eternity Bridge”. The piece took most of the month of May to complete and the final product was over 19 feet tall weighing in at 1100 pounds.

I was at the studio the day they were creating glass hand molds that would be incorporated into the metal after cutting out a corresponding shape for it to fit in. Students pressed their hands into a special sand followed by the pouring of molten glass into them where it settled and cooled before being polished. I was asked by the school art teacher working with the students to contribute my own hand print to be part of the sculpture. I was surprised, but felt a certain pride at being included in the project. My hand print would extend well beyond the creation phase and possibly my life.

It was an interesting feeling to be there as the crane lowered the sculpture into place before the artist bolted the frame holding my colored hand print into place. The sun illuminated the saffron colored glass as it slid into its slot and I enjoyed touching my piece of eternity.


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