This blog belongs to the Art In The Everyday course at Eastern Connecticut State University which explores everyday life experience through various frames of reference, including: sound, ephemeral sculpture, movement and community building.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Monumental Research

For Tuesday, March 9 please do internet or other type of research on one monument anywhere in the world that is interesting to you. The monument can be a giant bronze and granite thing, or a spoof of a monument, or a temporal monument.  Please post a picture of the monument you are researching and a paragraph on what you found interesting about it by Monday, March 8 at 8pm.  Come to class on Tuesday prepared to talk about your choice of monument.


  1. I researched the Taj Mahal a monument made entirely out of marble and located in Angra, India. I found it interesting that it was constructed as a tomb/monument for the emperor Shah Jahan's 3rd wife that died giving birth to their 17th child. The construction began in 1632 and ended in 1653. It is considered a monument of love and beauty in honor of Shah Jahan's late wife. It took over 1000 elephants to transport all the material needed and the estimated cost at the time would have been 32 million rupees.

  2. And here's a link to what it looks like.

  3. Yale Prof, sculptor,& writer Edward Tufte created a field of scattered sculptures in Cheshire next to a bird sanctuary and after researching these, my favorite's Escaping Flatland, a design made of ten huge sheets of aluminum meant to basically act as a blank canvas for nature, sunlight and shadows to paint on and change constantly. I'd call it a monument because Tufte created it to pay respect to nature...its almost like a peace offering, a monument that would say to nature, "i'm going to work with you, not against, and capture your beauty instead of trying to copy or surpass it". Each piece is 12 feet high and weighs 4,200 pounds!When light shines onto the sculpture after streaming through leaves on trees, the leaf shadows paint pictures on the panels that also can change color - one of the pictures shows the aluminum reflecting yellow/pink toned light. They capture wind & movement on the panels of changing light/darkness. The sculpture borrows light from sky grass and trees and reflects it. When I actually lived near the bird sanctuary/sculpture trail, I was totally unaware of this man's brilliance or talent... we'd go there to hang out and I liked the monuments but I was completely unaware of how much thought went into each piece. I also didn't know that He's a professor at Yale and has written books when not making these conceptual design sculptures that could seem simple or boring if you only glimpse and don't really look. Looking through his website and the descriptions of his sculptures blew my mind, incorporating nature and science and design so seamlessly.

  4. The monument that I chose was the Syrenka or in other words Warsaw Mermaid, this is located in Warsaw Poland. This monument has a wonderful legend. The legend starts off with two mermaid sisters who were getting bored of the water and the sea so they decided to explore the shore and go their separate ways. The first mermaid traveled to Danish and she sat at the entrance to the port of Copenhagen and she’s been sitting there to this very day. The other sister traveled to the port of Gdansk and later on traveled to the river Vistula. While traveling up she decided to rest on a shore that is known as Warsaw’s Old Town. She loved it so much that she decided to stay. While she was there she was giving the fisherman a hard time because she released all of their net and the fisherman could not catch any fish. However, once they found out that it was a mermaid they made a promise that they will not kill her. However, one man wanted to catch her and use her for a show so that he could earn some money. The man tricked the mermaid by throwing a stick in a wooden shed, the mermaids cries were so loud that all the fisherman hear her screaming. The fisherman released her and she was so grateful that she promised to protect them and their village. Since then, the mermaid, armed with a sword and shield, has been protecting the city and its inhabitants. I chose this Monument because I have learned so much about it in my childhood. This mermaid is very popular among the Polish culture and its seen everywhere. This monument to me exemplifies strength, courage, power, love and peace.

    link to the pic.

  5. I'm researching the World's Largest Booming Prairie Chicken. When I say the picture I was like COOL, but when I read the title of it...I was even more excited. I just think that it's cool where they put this monument and why. The monument is located in Rothsay, Minnesota. There is a plaque on the monument that states: Prairie chickens moved ahead of the settlers to inhabit the plains of Minnesota." I thought that it was very funny. Also in 1975 Rothsay, Minnesota was named "Prairie Chicken Capitial of Minnesota."
    The Picture:

  6. The monument I chose to research is the Adam’s Memorial. This monument has a cute, kind of scary legend. Augustas St. Gaudens created this sculpture after Marian Adams. Marian Adams, known as “Clover” and wife of Henry Adams, fell into a deep depression after the death of her father in 1885. In December of the same year, she committed suicide by drinking potassium. Her husband decided to replace a simple headstone for his wife with a grand memorial. He went to St. Gaudens to create a perfect monument for his beloved wife. It took a long and dreadful four years to create it. It is known as one of the most powerful and expensive pieces in history. The statue was never named, but was known as “Grief” for its sad appearance. He placed it behind a barrier of trees and shrubs and did not put an inscription on it. The public grew restless and curious, but Adams refused to speak about it.
    I found this monument interesting because it tells a story. It has an interesting legend behind it and is very famous. I find it thrilling that Adam’s did not name it and had the public go crazy over one simple memorial. There is also a monument copying this one and is even more famous than the original. It is located in Washington’s Rock Creek Cemetery.

  7. I researched a monument that I saw when I visited Washington DC on my senior trip. The monument was located in the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. It is titled,"Thinker on a Rock". It was created by Barry Flanagan in 1997, and was a gift of John and Mary Pappajohn. The monument gets moved and loaned to different museums and is currently on loan to Washington University in St. Louis. I really liked this piece of artwork when I saw it in the garden. It reminded me of my childhood and it was reminiscent of Alice in wonderland. I found it interesting that the artist, Barry Flanagan has a whole collection of Hare Sculptures, and he is known for saying that the statures are perceived as revealing different sides of their personalities. I look at this monument, and I see curiosity, and wisdom. When I saw it in the garden, I didn't know anything about it, and so thats why I chose to research it. I included a picture of myself thinking with the thinker on the rock, from my senior class trip.

  8. I decided to write about the Headington Shark. It's technically a sculpture, but I don't think it makes a difference. It looks like this:
    It was made in 1986 by a guy called Bill Heine, and he said "The shark was to express someone feeling totally impotent and ripping a hole in their roof out of a sense of impotence and anger and desperation... It is saying something about CND, nuclear power, Chernobyl and Nagasaki"
    The shark weighs 440 pounds and 25 feet long!
    I thought this was interesting.
    Oh and, its located in Headington, Oxford, England.

  9. I was looking at random monuments on google and came across this 9/11 monument. This monument is located in the Texas state cemetary in Austin. I found this monument interesting because 9/11 happened in our time. It effected us and impacted our lives. This monument includes two steel girders from the World Trade Center towers. This monument honors people from Texas who were in the September 11th attacks and those who died in operation enduring freedom in Afghanistan. This monument was added to the Texas Cemetary in 2003. This monument is very emotional but appealing to the eye as well. Here is the link, so you can see what it looks like:

    this is the site I found a cool monument. There are other monuments so the one I chose was the 18th picture down. It's the one where a guy comes out of the ground while playing the violin. This one stuck out in my mind because I like how it's like a person is actually coming out of the ground. I also like this one because I love the sound the violin makes.
    This monument portrays a lively man playing the violin. I say this because his eyes are closed to emphasize that he's concentrating on the music the violin is making. Also the way his hands are, it looks like he's playing notes and playing an actual song. I like this monument because it caught my eye the moment I saw it.

  11. Ugh. Sorry this is after 8.

    But I chose to research the Eiffel Tower. I always thought it was a beautiful monument to the French, I never really knew why it was built though and I certainly did not know it had floors or levels. The Eiffel Tower was originally built as the entrance arch for the 1889 World's Fair (which also was celebrating 100 years since the French revolution). I think the most interesting thing about the Eiffel Tower is that during World War II the French cut the lift cables up to the top levels so that the Nazi troops could not reach the top. Nazi soldiers had to climb the tower to put the Nazi flag up, however, the flag ended up blowing away with the wind. The Nazi soldiers continued to try to put the Nazi flag on the tower.

    Later on, a French citizen ended up replacing the Nazi flag with the French flag by climbing up the side of the tower.

    When Hitler was leaving France after his visit, it was said that he ordered the tower to be destroyed. The General who was given the order persuaded Hitler to use the tower to his advantage for radio broadcasts instead of destroying it.

    The lifts were repaired very soon after the Nazi occupation ended though. The tower has received many improvements over the years including search lights, radio antennas, and has had millions of visitors from all over the world. It is a major tourist attraction and a symbol of the French culture.

    I never knew that the tower had so much history.


    All the above facts came from:

    I know it's Wikipedia, but I actually just like Wikipedia. Sorry. I'll find some better resources to prove this.

  12. The monument I chose to do is the Shark Monument, also known as the Headington Shark. It's located on 2 New High Street of Headington in Oxford, United Kingdom. Bill Heine is the designer of this monument and commissioned the work as a reaction to the dropping of the atomic bomb of Nagaski, and it is also an expression of someone "ripping a hole in their roof out of a sense of impotence and anger and desperation." This monument was put into the roof on the 41st anniversary of the nuclear bomb dropping. The sculptor is John Buckley, it's 25 feet high, and it's made out of fiberglass.

    Here is the link to the picture:

  13. I looked at the Pyramids of Giza, one of the seven ancient wonders. It consists of the pyramids of Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure, as well as a giant Sphinx (a man's head on a lion's body) that was carved fron a giant single block of limestone.The pyramids are the resting places of the old 4th dynasty pharohs. There are also small pyramids for Khufu's wives, as well as some matsaba tombs for nobles.
    Khufu's pyramid was the tallest man-made structure for more than 3800 years. Its corners also point north, south, etc.It took 20 yrs to build.

  14. Stonehenge is a prehistoric, mysterious circle of upright stones in southern England. Construction on the great monument began 5,000 years ago; the famous stones that still stand today were put in place about 4,000 years ago. The stones are aligned almost perfectly with the sunrise on the summer solstice, and it is almost unquestioned that Stonehenge was built as a spectacular place of worship.

  15. Kelsey Oleynek
    I researched a monument created by Jason de Cories Taylor. He created an underwater sculpture park in Grenada off the coast of the West Indies. His goal was to create a relationship between art and the environment. By placing his sculptures underwater, the environment adapts to the sculptures. The coral and plants slowly begin to grow on the monument along with wildlife living within and around it. Also, by placing the sculptures in water they appear 25 percent larger and they appear closer as a result. His sculptures can be seen by divers and are placed in shallow waters so they are visible by divers. I thought the idea of placing a sculpture underwater changes one's perspective and meaning of a monument. I wanted to choose a monument that was different, and I feel that Jason de Cories Taylor’s monument is very unique and stands out compared to normal monuments.

  16. I was looking for a monument when i came across the Cristo in Brazil. This 130 ft monument looks over the city of Rio de Janerio not including the 31 ft pedestal it stands on. It was constructed from 1922 to 1931 and is made of soap stone. It is a pretty amazing monument that can be seen from miles and miles away. it is also known as the Christ of Redeemer.

    Photos and more information.

  17. okay, I apologize that this is after 8pm guess I kinda got my due dates, and deadlines mixed up but, I'm going to post this anyways. (hopefully still get creditt? =] )

    So, the monument that I had picked is the Chocolate Mountains in Bohol, Philippines. I've actually been there too, and it is beautiful. Across a span of land that is probably about over 50 square kilometers which is when convert around 20 square miles. There are over 1,268 hills located here, and they are hills not mountains or anything like that. They are all covered with grass too, so when the dry season in the Philippines comes all of the grass turns brown which is where they get the name from. The brown reminds them of chocolate, thus the name Chocolate Hills. This place is a very big tourist spot for anyone that comes to the Philippines, and has also become one of its' National Geological Monuments. For one of the hills they created a stair way that goes all the way up to the top of the hill so that you can see everything around you, and all of the other hills that go on for miles. It is truly beautiful, and they also have mini monuments erected for saints, and patrons of the Philippines. Its a real beautiful place.


    p.s. If I can find them, I will show the photos that I took from when I went to the Philippines and went to the Chocolate Hills. If you look close enough towards the base of the hills, you see people's homes, and such. Not only is this place a National Geological Monument, it is also home to some filipinos too.

  18. correction to the first time i said the name of the monument. Its the Chocolate Hills, not the Chocolate mountains.

  19. Comment by Kelsey Oleynek:

    I researched a monument created by Jason de Cories Taylor. He created an underwater sculpture park in Grenada off the coast of the West Indies. His goal was to create a relationship between art and the environment. By placing his sculptures underwater, the environment adapts to the sculptures. The coral and plants slowly begin to grow on the monument along with wildlife living within and around it. Also, by placing the sculptures in water they appear 25 percent larger and they appear closer as a result. His sculptures can be seen by divers and are placed in shallow waters so they are visible by divers. I thought the idea of placing a sculpture underwater changes one's perspective and meaning of a monument. I wanted to choose a monument that was different, and I feel that Jason de Cories Taylor’s monument is very unique and stands out compared to normal monuments.

  20. Monument I chose was the motherland monument in Russia. It was built in 1967, and at the time was the tallest monument in the world. Taking approximately 200 steps from the bottom of the hill to the top where the monument is, is supposed to represent the Battle of Stalingrad. The monument is due to collapse soon!

    I think this monument is incredibly freaky. I'll explain in class.


    The monument I chose is called The Valiant Five and is located in Canada. It is representative of the women who started the women's rights movement in Canada. It was sculpted by Barbara Paterson and is the first monument on Parliament Hill to commemorate women.

  22. The monument that I decided to research is the sphinx in Egypt. It is one of the oldest monuments in Egypt, but the interesting thing about it is that no one knows who built the monument or why. All of the other monuments in the area like the great pyramids or other tombs have been identified and we now know which pharaohs built which pyramids or tombs. Although the Sphinx remains a mystery. The Sphinx is the statue of a lion's body with the head of a pharaoh. It seems to be a monument or memorial to a Pharoah, but we still don't know which pharaoh it is.

  23. Sorry I didnt realize we were supposed to post this by 8 yesterday, but I still did the assignment.

    I chose the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, DC. I realize that this choice is kind of serious and not very funny, and I didn't choose it based on it's looks. I really wanted to choose a monument that I experienced personally because I don't think that you can truly experience a monument from its picture.

    The Unknown Soldier was laid to rest here on November 11, 1921. A year after the first tombs were created in Britain and France for their own Unknown Soldiers on Armistice Day in 1920. The soldier who is buried in the tomb is decorated with the Medal of Honor, as well as several other prestigious awards from other countries.
    The tomb was redesigned 10 years later by Lorimer Rich, and sculpted by Thomas Jones. Its four sides has significant meaning, and the front (the part that most people see) states "Here Rests in Honored Glory an American Soldier Known but to God".
    A soldier or "sentinel" guards the tomb. The tomb has been guarded every minute of every day since 1937. The sentinel takes 21 steps back and forth in front of the tomb continually until the changing of the guard ceremony.
    The monument now holds an Unknown Soldier from WWI, WWII, and the Korean War. A man was in the crypt for the Vietnam was, but DNA testing identified him, so the Vietnam Crypt remains empty.
    Since that time countries all of the world have erected memorials for soldiers whose names were lost with their lives in battles. I believe that this connection is so significant, that although each memorial is meant for its own country, it very much represents ever man who has ever died in any battle, nameless or not.

    The front of the Tomb-
    The Wreaths of the Tomb-
    The original Tomb-
    Peace, Valor, and Victory on the back of the Tomb-

  24. file:///Users/alexmoshier/Desktop/708px-Wooden_monument_in_Veisiejai.jpg

    I found this picture of these wooden monuments in Veisiejai, which is a a city in Lithuania. Other than that, I couldn't find out too much about it but I liked the 3 soldier looking old men with their swords down. It has to represent something or someone in the past. I also thought this monument was special because it was carved from wood. Sort of like 3 todem poles only not very native american but something else.

  25. The monument “The dying Lion of Lucerne” is located in Lucerne, Switzerland. It was designed by Bertel Thorvaldsen, and it is in memory of the Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution, when revolutionaries stormed the Tuileries Palace in Paris, France. It is a giant dying lion carved out of a wall of sandstone rock above a pond at the east end of the medieval town. Mark Twain made a famous comment about the Lion monument, saying that is was “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world." The Latin inscription above the monument HELVETIORUM FIDEI AC VIRTUTI means "To the loyalty and bravery of the Swiss". Also you'll find the engraved names of the dead and of the saved officers of the Swiss guard as well as the death toll among the Swiss soldiers (DCCLX = 760) and the number of surviving soldiers (CCCL = 350). The giant sculpture is 6 m [20 ft] high and 10 m [33 ft] long. I came across this monument while looking, and I liked it a lot. I think the detail of the lion is incredible, and I think that it commemorates the lives the soldiers who died also made it unique.

  26. The monument I chose was the World War I memorial in Washington D.C. It commemorates the 26,000 residents of Washiongton who served in the war. There hasn't been anything done to restore it for 30 years, and now they are going to spend $7.3 million to restore it. I chose it because It wasn't a human figure, but instead, a fancy place to sit an enjoy the outdoors, that is of corse, if they let people sit in it.
    Photo and Further Details:

  27. file:///Users/alexmoshier/Desktop/IMG_0444.JPG

    here is one idea for a monument

  28. I wanted to research a humorous monument and I found a good website that had a lot of different monuments. These monuments don't have any historical meaning behind them and personally, I'm more intrigued by these monuments than the formal historical statue of a famous person. I think that these monuments show scenes that you can see in every day life and they make seemingly normal things look humorous. I think the monuments on this website show a lot of creativity and imagination and I think they could cheer someone up who walks by them. This is the website that I looked at:


    This monument built by Sedefhar Mehmet Aga, called Blue Mosque was built after the Ottoman Empire took over the Byzentine Empire, and the Ottomans got Istanbol back, and built this Mosque for the Muslims to pray in...My friend Cemre, who moved to the U.S from Turkey about four years ago use to come to this Mosque two times a week to pray with his family. He said it was extremley important to him and his people, so I thought it would be cool to look it up and write about it....this took nine years to design and build

  30. I attempted to research my monument of choice: bolton notch's painted peak. This monument inspries me because of it's symbolism. Since I was a little girl I loved to hike around bolton notch. The peak was my favorite place, you could see a beautiful view from up there and the rock itself, slightly etched with moss and surrounded by wildlife was a sight of natural beauty. If you look at bolton notch now it's covered in trash and spray paint, overlooking the highway 384. This is heart breaking to me. From the dirty highway you'll see the peak painted as the American flag. This is symbolic to me because it symbolizes the destruction of nature all across america. We as americas destroy our natural beauties with trash and graffitti and then think it's "cool looking". So while you're driving down 384 and look up to see a flag painted on what used to be a beaktiful peak, think about what it looks like from the viewpoint of a nature enthuseist at the top.

  31. The monument that I chose for this assignment was the " Stone field Sculpture" in Hartford, Ct. It is right across the street from the Wadsworth Atheneum. It consists of 36 rocks aligned in a triangular shape across the field right next to its ancient burial grounds. in 1977 the city of hartford payed Carl Andre $87,000 to make a sculpture. He took the offer and began making the sculpture. most of Andre's work consists of natural elements such as brick or stone. He took huge rocks and placed them throughout the field. This was extremely controversial and people still talk about it to this day. Is it art? or is it just a bunch of rocks sitting on a field. Andre wanted this to be something where people could interact with his artwork and make it useful instead of a normal sculpture. Although he cheated the system and took all the money, I think that this is art. I think that Andre had a meaning for this sculpture and anything with meaning is considered art, I believe that it is art but back in 1977 they did not see a lot of abstract, or different art. Most artist and sculptors back than stuck with classic painting or drawing.

  32. For my monument I choose sunset rock in North-South Lake state park in New York. This isn't a real monument but it is a special place to me and to others. Sunset Rock is the halfway point to climbing the moutain in the park, which is located in the catskills near hunter mt. I used to go camping in this state park every year when I was little and part of the tradition was for the whole loop which consisted of family friends, to go and hike up to sunset rock and then come back for a big barbque before everyone left. The acutal sunset rock is simply a boulder on a rocky outface with names and date carved into and around it from people who have been there in the past. It has a beautiful view of the two lakes and a large part of the camping grounds. My favorite part about sunset rock was that you could see the moutains past the campgrounds and they looked like green waves that slowly rolled out of view and into the summer haze.

    These pictures aren't very good but there the best I could find online.