COVID-19 Symptom Attestation

The gallery will be closed for the summer.

Please visit the sculpture collection.

  • Robert Maki's sculpture Curve/Diagonal. Full description in body text.
  • Robert Maki's sculpture Curve/Diagonal. Full description in body text.


Robert Maki
Painted corten steel. 8' h. x 10 1/2' w.
Photo Credit: 
Matthew Anderson



Although actually constructed in 1979 for a gallery exhibition, Maki's sculpture comes from a series of studies done between 1974 and 1976. Its siting at Western was crucial because he was interested in the direction of the sun assisting in the restructuring of the work. Depending on the time of day, weather conditions, and positions of the viewer, the shape and dimension of the real curve will change. Similar to Judd, Maki is interested primarily in perceptual issues rather than metaphoric references.

By framing the student in his photograph, Judd had exceeded the role of mere architect and encouraged a role for the viewer. Maki, a graduate of Western (1962), took up this perceptual theme in his own sculpture, but has pushed the ''envelope'' in his quest to understand how we see. Earlier as a Western student of industrial design, engineering, and drafting, Maki brought to his art a concentrated focus on geometry's elements of line and plane.'' Similar to Caro's India, Maki's Curve/Diagonal (1976-79) was purchased during a gallery exhibition, so that the work had to undergo his critical study of the difficult transition from studio or gallery to public place. Along with defused memories, the integration of landscape with dominant buildings came into play in Maki's decision to site Curve/Diagonal along High Street. Now the new dorms of Mathes and Nash next to the student commons faced both the Greek revival Edens Hall and Paul Thiry's early modern, stacked concrete apartments in Higginson Hall on the other side of the street.

Funding provided by

Gift from the Virginia Wright Fund, 1980; installed 1981.

Audio Description

Sculpture Map


Western Gallery & sculpture tour on the campus map