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In Pictures: Stunning Shonibare Sculpture Revealed

Yinka Shonibare's Wind Sculpture (SG) I made its New York debut to the delight of onlookers and a contingent of Davidsonians who traveled north for the occasion. The sculpture, brought to Central Park by the Public Art Fund, will remain in New York City through the summer, but in the fall–through the generous support of Pat Rodgers–the sculpture will be permanently installed at Davidson College in front of the E. Craig Wall Jr. Academic Center.

The Wall Center, which Rodgers Builders constructed, not only serves as premier real estate on campus for Shonibare's work, but connects strikingly to the ideas behind the piece and to Rodgers's motivation in bringing it to campus. The center's cross-pollination of physical and social sciences, and humanities underscores Davidson's transdisciplinary emphasis in reimagining the liberal arts experience.

Read more about the sculpture or watch a video featuring the artist and Pat Rodgers.

  • Wind Sculpture

    Artist Yinka Shonibare's Wind Sculpture (SG) I is revealed on a bright, clear March afternoon in New York City. The piece stretches upward 23 feet and appears to defy gravity. Wind Sculpture (SG) I is the latest in a series of large fiberglass works the artist began creating in 2013.

  • Pat Rodgers and Yinka Shonibare

    Through support from Pat Rodgers (l), a Davidson College trustee and proprietor of Rodgers Builders, the piece, with its cross-cultural themes and upwardly expanding swirl of turquoise, red and burnt orange, will move to Davidson for permanent installation in front of the new E. Craig Wall Jr. Academic Center. In New York, Rodgers met the artist, Yinka Shonibare (r), for the first time.

  • Pat Rodgers and Yinka Shonibare

    Both Rodgers and Shonibare hope the work will spark conversation when it is installed on the Davidson campus in the fall. In a Skype interview with the college, Shonibare said: "I want children to get from this as much as grown ups and people who want to explore the very serious issues in the work. I also hope the work will start a conversation about how we relate to each other regardless of our ethnic background."

  • Carol Quillen and Pat Rodgers

    During her tenure, Davidson College President Carol Quillen (l) has been instrumental in integrating art into everyday life on campus. Here, she is pictured with Pat Rodgers (r) at the debut of Waves Sculpture (SG) I.

  • People taking phone photos of sculpture

    Shonibare, a veteran sculptor who has done ambitious installations and gallery exhibits, also has displayed his Nelson's Ship in a Bottle for the 2010 Fourth Plinth Commission at Trafalgar Square in London. His Wind Sculpture VII was installed permanently outside the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in 2016. Onlookers heard from the artist himself at the debut.

  • Shonibare's sculpture against NYC skyline

    The artist's first outdoor sculpture in New York, Wind Sculpture (SG) I, is located at the southeast corner of Central Park, near the 60th & 5th St. entrance at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza.

  • Pat Rodgers

    Pat Rodgers serves as president and CEO of one of the largest contractors in the southeast, Rodgers Builders. Her support to bring Shonibare's work to Davidson honors her late husband, B.D., who found joy and inspiration in public art.

  • Jim Cohan

    Jim Cohan, of the James Cohan Gallery, attends the unveiling. The New York gallery is currently exhibiting Shonibare's work, Prejudice at Home: A Parlour, a Library, and a Room, which features three major installations.

  • Davidsonians, including faculty, staff and students, at the unveiling

    Davidsonians, including faculty, staff and students, went the distance to be a part of the unveiling. And alumni and students who hail from NYC, some of whom traveled home for spring break, were able to enjoy the moment in real time. Van Every/Smith Galleries Director and Curator Lia Newman, who was integral to bringing the sculpture to Davidson, is pictured at center.

  • Yinka Shonibare

    Yinka Shonibare on Wind Sculpture (SG) I: [the sculpture is] "a visual celebration of the presence of migrants.... We are here. We are staying. Either you want to party with us, or you don't. But we're not going anywhere."

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