Monumental work

KSU art professor Ayokunle Odeleye

KSU professor’s art does justice to Colorado court With the recent completion of a 30-foot…

Georgia (Jul 26, 2010)

KSU professor’s art does justice to Colorado court

With the recent completion of a 30-foot long, 6,000 pound sculpture for the front façade of the Aurora Colo., Municipal Court building, KSU art professor Ayokunle Odeleye achieved a milestone in his 30-year career in public art.
Installed 15 feet above the main court entrance, the massive stainless steel artwork welcomes court employees and visitors with hand-fabricated metal symbols of the Aurora court and community. It is the largest and first suspended work among the more than 20 public art projects Odeleye has created across the U.S. from Atlanta to Alaska. 
“As is customary for the public artworks I create, I developed the Aurora project designs after researching information related to the court and the community,” Odeleye said. “Only after conducting extensive interviews with Aurora citizens and court personnel was I able to envision this monumental artwork for the court.”
The Aurora court panel depicts symbols representing the court’s support of justice and society under the rule of law, the institution of marriage, the people who keep the court operating and the court’s service to a diverse population. Also reflected in the work is the community’s appreciation for the area’s booming biochemical industry, continued development, and the presence of a military airbase that helps protect the nation and supports the local economy. Odeleye said he incorporated curved elements throughout the composition to represent the importance of water, a scarce resource in the area. 
Assisting Odeleye on the project were his long-time shop assistant and sculptor Etienne Jackson; Nicholas Cochran, a sculpture major and 2010 KSU graduate; Kyle Howser, a 2010 KSU art graduate who worked six weeks on the project; and Odeleye’s daughter, Morolake, a Rhode Island School of Design video editing and photography graduate who documented the project over the two years it took to complete. 
Odeleye was trained at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia and at Howard University in Washington, D.C., where he received his BFA and MFA degrees.  He also recently completed The Spring Valley Twins, two large abstract figures, for Spring Valley, N.Y., in 2008 and the 1898 Memorial in Wilmington, N.C., in 2009.
To view more of Odeleye’s public art projects, visit www.odeleyesculpturestudios.com.

 

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