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Rob Ley Installs Succulent-shaped Kinetic Sculpture in Portland

Ambiguous, Rob Ley, Oregon Zoo, Portland, USA

Leah Nash + Christian Columbres

American artist Rob Ley has recently installed a succulent-shaped kinetic sculpture, called ‘Ambiguous’, facing the Education Center of Oregon Zoo in Portland. The conceptual approach for this public artwork is based on the Education Center’s interpretive theme that “small things matter,” particularly how many small parts contribute to a whole.

Rob Ley created a sculpture composed of hundreds of small bow-tie shaped elements with unique-angled bends and rivets that turn the separate pieces into a singular, monolithic form.

This piece takes inspiration from the similarities seen when studying various forms that mark the beginning of life. Seeds, spores, eggs and pollen exhibit fascinating tectonic and textural qualities which are unique to the species, yet ambiguous when compared to one another. As a result, the sculpture may be understood both as a large form when seen from a distance, as well as an assembly of many small parts working together when viewed up close. The sculpture is created entirely from bead blasted stainless steel, with a yellow powder-coated interior surface.

 Ambiguous, Rob Ley, Oregon Zoo, Portland, USA Ambiguous, Rob Ley, Oregon Zoo, Portland, USA Ambiguous, Rob Ley, Oregon Zoo, Portland, USA Ambiguous, Rob Ley, Oregon Zoo, Portland, USA