Bay View Station

1987
George Trakas
Four sections of wood and steel. 45' x 144' area.
Photo Credit: 
Sandra Locke

 

George Trakas' installation creates a pedestrian's passageway between the industrial, port city and the university on the west side of campus, and a viewing station for reflection on these communal connections. He has used both architectural structures in his work and architecture as the subject of his sculpture. At Western Trakas first studied the site conditions: primarily a steep, weedy hill with a dirt path rising to the concrete pillars of the Performing Arts Center and a sitting area on a small concrete pad. Trakas chose to weave his own catwalk and irregularly shaped decks across the hill.

Both Hamrol and Trakas enjoy the dedicated time, concentration, and physical labor involved in the building of their structures. Trakas actually wanted to be an architect but soon realized he could translate this craft into a sculptural experience. He could infuse sculpture with the architect's research into materials, site, and function. Similar to Serra, Trakas goes where he can build work. Influenced by Serra's precedent of generating sculpture from a particular setting and directing the viewer's physical awareness of self and site, Trakas took his response one step further to include in his work the themes of a site. When he was asked to participate in the University's site-specific symposium in the late eighties, Trakas no doubt saw in the old lumber mill town of Bellingham on the bay something that reminded him of his various backgrounds. He had grown up along the St. Lawrence River in a rural area of Canada with economic foundations in manufacturing. Later he was attracted to New York, a city transformed by industry and built at the merging of river and ocean traffic.

 

Funding provided by

987 Sculpture Symposium funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and private donations. Temporary installation in 1987. Permanent installation, gift of David and Kay Syre Family.

Audio interpretation of Bay View Station

 

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