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A public art effort to build a 20' tall monument inscribed with the wise words of the late Michelle McNamara, "It's Chaos, Be Kind."
A public art effort to build a 20' tall monument inscribed with the wise words of the late Michelle McNamara, "It's Chaos, Be Kind."
159 backers pledged $24,088 to help bring this project to life.

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It's Chaos, Be Kind: A Stone Monument to the Present project video thumbnail
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$24,088

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We are fully funded!  But there is still time to join in the effort.  All additional funds raised beyond the final cost of the original sculpture will be put toward the surrounding park.

There will be many more steps required to complete the design, creation, and installation of this bold monument.

The designs are ready, and like a good map before a road trip, they are essential.
The designs are ready, and like a good map before a road trip, they are essential.

The first step will be to select and order the blocks cut to the right dimensions from the local mill.  I plan to use a Texas limestone quarried in nearby Liberty Hill, Texas, called Cordova Cream.  It is a beautiful stone and used in building projects throughout the Central Texas region.  Most notably it is the material used on most of the buildings on the University of Texas at Austin campus.

The process of selecting, ordering and taking delivery of the raw stone blocks could take up to 10 weeks.

The tools of the trade.  Most of these tools are the same as those used by ancient carvers.  The pneumatic hammer was invented in the late 1800s
The tools of the trade. Most of these tools are the same as those used by ancient carvers. The pneumatic hammer was invented in the late 1800s

After getting the material to my shop, it's time to carve the letters.  I'll be using a technique called v-sink inscription.  By inscribing at a steep and consistent angle, the resulting light and shadow serves to illuminate each letter and create maximum legibility.  This technique has been used by carvers throughout history and can be seen on buildings from Ancient Rome and beyond.

V-sink inscription is ancient.  Turning a corner with it...I've never seen before.
V-sink inscription is ancient. Turning a corner with it...I've never seen before.

My twist on the v-sink is to turn a corner with the letters.  When I first made the model for this project I decided to carve the word 'Chaos' in this manner to underscore the significance of the word.  I wasn't sure however if the legibility would be compromised.  I'm happy to report that it wasn't.  In fact, in addition to being extremely legible and yet somewhat disorienting, it has the benefit of highlighting the artistry of letter carving and invites the viewer to see not only the words, but to recognize the sculptural quality of the piece.

After carving comes the installation.  Working with the city of Florence, we will decide the best place in the park to put the sculpture.  Then, we'll pour a solid foundation of reinforced concrete with a steel plate embedded to weld the steel tube connection.  Using a crane and scaffolding, the separate pieces will be set on top of one another, threading the steel tube to complete the monument. 

The community park in Florence, Texas, peacefully awaits
The community park in Florence, Texas, peacefully awaits

 After the installation, its time for celebration.  I hope to see you all there!

Risks and challenges

My optimistic goal is to complete the installation by the end of October 2018. The greatest challenges to meeting this date will be milling time and the installation stages of the project.

Once funded, I will order the stone blocks for the sculpture from the quarry and mill. I have worked with this mill for many years, and they normally maintain a lead time of 6 to 10 weeks.

For installation, the foundation will need to be engineered and an installation crane arranged, mean while the final location needs to be decided upon and approved by the people of Florence and the Florence City Council. Working with city governments can sometimes take longer than expected.

This project will exercise both my artistic muscle and project management skills as I orchestrate the many factors (chaos?) inherent with materializing a dream.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    Get the party started!

    After the project is complete I'll be hosting a dedication celebration in Florence, TX and you'll be invited!

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
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    Pledge US$ 40 or more About US$ 40

    Tell your friends!

    If you donate at this level you will receive (in addition to a party invitation)
    A set of 3 postcards depicting various stages of the production of the project.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 60 or more About US$ 60

    Show me the plans!

    If you donate at this level you will receive (in addition to the party invitation and set of postcards)
    An 11" x 17" poster of the original design drawing showing construction specs and lettering layout.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    I want a piece of it!

    If you donate at this level you will receive (in addition to the party invitation, set of postcards, and poster)
    A hand crafted 6" diameter medallion sliced from the cores cut out of each block and inscribed with the words "It's Chaos, Be Kind". This will be a limited run and each piece will be numbered.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
    • Handcrafted medalion
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    Put my name on it!

    If you donate at this level (in addition to the party invitation, set of postcards, poster, and handcrafted medallion)
    Your name will be included in the list of donor names to be etched into the base of monument in 1" tall letters and thanking you for your generosity.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
    • Handcrafted medalion
    • Name etched in 1" tall letters at base of monument
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Put my name on it. Bigger!

    If you donate at this level (in addition to the party invitation, set of postcards, poster, and handcrafted medallion)
    Your name will be included in the list of donor names to be etched into the base of monument in 1 1/2" tall letters and thanking you for your generosity.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
    • Handcrafted medalion
    • Name etched in 1 1/2" tall letters at base of monument
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Put my name on it. Really BIG!

    If you donate at this level (in addition to the party invitation, set of postcards, poster, and handcrafted medallion)
    Your name will be included in the list of donor names to be etched into the base of monument in 2 1/2" tall letters and thanking you for your generosity.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
    • Handcrafted medalion
    • Name etched in 2 1/2" tall letters at base of monument
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 2,000 or more About US$ 2,000

    I want to get my hands dirty!

    If you donate at this level (in addition to the party invitation, set of postcards, poster, handcrafted medallion, and 2 1/2" donor recognition)
    You'll be invited to my shop for a 6 hour one-on-one lettering workshop.

    Includes:
    • Invitation to Dedication Party
    • 3 Postcards depicting the project
    • Poster of the original design drawing
    • Handcrafted medalion
    • Name etched in 2 1/2" tall letters at base of monument
    • Hand Lettering Workshop
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Funding period

- (38 days)