Twelve dazzling stone spheres, ranging in size from a diminutive 16 inches to a colossal 98 inches, are a surprising and provocative addition to the Science and Engineering Quad. International artist Alicja Kwade created the site-specific outdoor work, titled Pars pro Toto, which was installed earlier this month.
The highly collaborative process of selecting the work was launched by Jennifer Widom, the Frederick Emmons Terman Dean of the School of Engineering, who asked Laura Breyfogle, then the School of Engineering’s senior associate dean for external relations, to establish an ad hoc committee of faculty, staff and students from throughout the university to select the artwork. Like other recent public art projects on campus that have been underwritten by private donors, Pars pro Toto was funded by a Stanford alumni family who are long-loyal supporters of the university.
“I’m thrilled that we’ve been able to bring Pars pro Toto to Stanford, and I’m truly grateful to the many people who helped make this exciting project a reality,” said Widom. “As students, faculty, staff and visitors return to campus over the coming months, they’re going to find a Science and Engineering Quad that’s been transformed.
“One of the things I find particularly exciting about this work is how it inspires each person to bring to it their own interpretation, their own way of interacting with it. I greatly look forward to walking through the SEQ every day, watching people approach and enjoy our wonderful new art piece.”
BY ROBIN WANDER