USU Brigham City
WASATCH STRATA was commissioned by Utah State University as the first sculpture for its new campus in Brigham City. Construction of the campus' first structure (Jacoby Architects of Salt Lake City) was near completion by the time Otto Rigan was asked to propose a work. In addition to responding to the architecture, the sculptures' location would signal arrival at the new campus. The Artist decided to use the patterned facade as a starting point in the design of the sculpture as it, in turn, had drawn inspiration from the stratified formations of the nearby Wasatch mountain range. If the mountains were the macro expression of the strata, and the building was the micro reiteration, then the sculpture was to be seen as a concentrated expression in this design fugue.
While the front, or "face" of the sculpture reflects this strata theme, the verso side of the sculpture is the natural cleft of the stone as it would be encountered in its natural state.
The Artist chose a regional stone -a dense red sandstone- as the building blocks for the sculpture. This choice of material was essential in that it would feel familiar and natural in this environment. The glass pattern implies the mountain strata and is mirrored so that its color is invigorated by the light surrounding the sculpture. Since there is no artificial illumination or mechanical enhancement to the mirrored glass, it responds to the changing nature of light from morning to nightfall, and season to season.