'Guardian' Installed Outside VSU's Odum Library

August 9, 2012

Jessica Pope
Communications and Media Relations Coordinator

'Guardian' Installed Outside VSU's Odum Library


VALDOSTA -- Valdosta State University has added another sculpture to its outdoor art collection, bringing the total to six pieces.

“Guardian,” by Tallahassee, Fla., artist Mark Dickson, stands 14 feet tall and is made of welded steel, stainless steel, and bronze, shared Julie Bowland, Fine Arts Gallery director and College of the Arts professor who serves on the six-member committee charged with building the university’s permanent art collection. The sculpture was installed on Friday, July 27, between the Odum Library and the Fine Arts Building.

“Steel is my love, for its possibilities are endless,” according to Dickson’s biography. “Hammered, melted, heated, and welded …. Though it is cold and hard, with the proper persuasion the steel becomes warm and alive.”

A native of northern California, Dickson’s fascination with art was influenced by his grandmother, who was a collector of art and a museum docent. She commissioned works by abstract sculptor Peter Macchiarini of San Francisco, Calif., inspiring her grandson to want to learn how the shapes were contrived.

“I enjoy deconstructing ordinary concepts, the things we are used to seeing in only one way, objects and ideas whose beauty and intrigue we may have become immune to,” according to Dickson’s artist’s statement. “When they are reconstructed in an abstract manner, form is allowed to flow freely without the constraint of the accepted norm, and the viewer is invited to rediscover the ordinary object in a different way.”

For more information on the university’s outdoor collection, please read “VSU Adds Mythological Creature to Outdoor Art Collection.”

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