Public Art: Man of Fire (Paseo de San Antonio)*Categories:
- Public Art
Man of Fire
Artist: Kim Yasuda (1998)
The design of this commemorative artwork connects San Jose State University with Plaza de Cesar Chavez, in the heart of the City's downtown. The artwork references Dr. Ernesto Galarza’s life-long pursuit of bridging academic and civil life and referencing the many facets of his work, including academia, poetry, education and labor organizing. The work is composed of three elements:
The surface of the cast-concrete library table is inlaid with bronze farm tools, a cast-bronze field-worker's hat, photo-etched black granite portraits, photo-etched ceramic tiles and bronze text. The relief surface of the table is designed to encourage pedestrians to view and touch the inlaid elements.
Cast Bronze Chair
At the west end of the table, facing Plaza de Cesar Chavez, an empty cast-bronze chair with a wooden seat serves as a metaphor for Dr. Galarza as the field worker who took his scholarly practice into the world. The chair is a functional element, and is intended to encourage visitors to stop, sit and explore the information contained in the table surface.
Ribbons of Terrazzo
The ribbons of terrazzo are 11" wide and of varying length, and lace through the existing Paseo paving in each of the four blocks. Designed to have a subtle physical and visual impact upon the Paseo, these ribbons are intended to draw the pedestrian through the length of the walkway. The terrazzo is inlaid with bronze text, in both English and Spanish, introducing the commemoration through personal recollections about Dr. Galarza's life and work from his family, friends and colleagues.
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