A memorial sculpture for composer, media artist and longtime Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS) Fellow Paul Earls, who died in September 1998, will be unveiled at the MIT Museum on Wednesday, Oct. 20 during a public reception from 5:30-7pm.
Funded by the Council for the Arts at MIT, the School of Architecture and Planning, the CAVS and Zeren Earls, for Paul is the result of a unique collaboration between artist and family friend E.S. Baxter and Mr. Earls himself.
Based on Mr. Earls's wish for a memorial that "leaves no trace," the 39-by-25-by-18-inch ceramic mosaic sculpture which frames fractured glass is brick-red and granite/concrete gray -- colors chosen to blend with the MIT campus.
Dedicated to the "creation of new work that neither he, nor anyone else has experienced before, which also integrated the senses and celebrated life," Mr. Earls participated in the creation of his own memorial. A month before his death, he conceived the "Dropping Event," during which he broke two sets of stacked glass plates by dropping large rocks, as friends and colleagues gathered to celebrate his life.
Mr. Baxter incorporated the shattered glass into a pair of memorial sculptures, the larger of which is permanently installed in a sculpture garden at his home in Bali. The MIT memorial is a portable piece which will be sited below a laser-art installation by Mr. Earls in the MIT Museum.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on October 20, 1999.