significant figures in the development of polymers


Delving into the quasi-figurative sculptural realm, this new series of work examines seven distinct personalities whom have contributed substantially to the development of polymers. Included are: Charles Goodyear, Wallace Hume Carothers, Alexander Parkes, Leo Baekland, Stephanie L. Kwolek, Roy J. Plunkett, and John Wesley Hyatt. Not meant to be representational by any means, this sculpture is initially focused on engaging an audience visually and tactically. Constructed of fabricated steel, cast bronze, and polymer, these pieces invite contemplation about their undulating, semi-human forms and their amorphous hands. The figures were designed to connect with viewers on many levels. The original allure recedes to expose innovative ideas associated with polymer development and how those ideas affect human existence. The viewer is strained to determine the role polymers play in his/her life, and ultimately their own passivity and/or activity associated with polymer manufacture. The sculpture is meant to propel thought towards the consumer's role in environmental stewardship and that relationship to industrial and governmental roles. Additionally, viewers may examine the personal motivations of these significant figures and how certain technical innovations come to be realized. Particular attention may be paid to the mirror image of John Wesley Hyatt cast in bronze. Hyatt's research and development in the area of cellulosic materials is emphasized in the material choice for the hands of all the figures, cellulose acetate butyrate (CAB).




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