Conserving An Artistic Legacy

Have you been curious about why there’s scaffolding around part of the front of the College Complex building? Or perhaps wondered what the story is behind the carved structure that features prominently in the Gateway Plaza of the College?

What you are seeing is a mural made by cast concrete relief, designed and created by noted Mexican-American artist and architect Sergio O’Cadiz. O’Cadiz worked as a conceptual architect and renderer for William Blurock & Associates, one of the companies that designed the first phase of the College’s construction. William Blurock, the firm’s principal, encouraged his workers to incorporate art into the design of buildings. The result is the sculptured wall at the front of the Complex building (which began life as the College’s first permanent library building), finished in 1967.

In 2016 the College began the process of conservation of this historically important piece of art. The first steps were a careful washing of the structure last spring, along with an evaluation of the sculpture. EverGreene Architectural Arts, an award-winning leader in the field, was engaged to assess and work on the piece. During the last few weeks, experts from EverGreene have been on campus, making further observations and going through the conservation process.

The goal of the work is to stabilize elements in the mural, so that this piece of history can endure at the College for another 50 years. A re-dedication is being planned upon completion of the work.