River Campus Students “Commence” This Semester

River Campus Students "Commence" This Semester

It represents “a gateway to the University and the City of Cape Girardeau,” says Chris Wubbena, Southeast professor of art and sculpture area head, in describing the sculpture, titled “Commence,” installed at the roundabout on South Fountain Street near Southeast’s River Campus. The two-piece shiny-surfaced sculpture forms a portal, with the inside appearing eroded, “showing that many things have passed through it,” he says.

The 14-foot-tall piece, which represents one of many “gateways to one’s life,” welcomes students and visitors near the entrance to Southeast’s River Campus.

Wubbena designed the sculpture, hashing out logistics for the piece over the past year and half. Southeast art students then began working in earnest in mid-May in the Serena metal shop, fabricating the work, cutting, grinding and welding metal to form the two bookend pieces that make up the sculpture, each of which are about nine feet wide.

“They already knew how to do it,” Wubbena said of his students. “They just learned how to do it on a larger scale. From the very beginning, maybe my proudest moment was showing the students how to do everything – how to strap, how to cut,” Wubbena says. “At the end, I didn’t have to show them anything. They took control. As a professor, that’s a huge moment of pride. At the very end I said, ‘see what you guys did?’ They really did make this piece.”

Read more and watch creation and installation video.

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