Mission and Vision - Department of Languages and Cultures at St. Cloud State University

Foreign Languages

Foreign Languages

Lawrence Hall History, Lore and Artwork


Lawrence Hall Artwork

As part of the bonding process for the renovation of Lawrence Hall, money was put aside for public art. It will be two seating areas outside of Lawrence Hall. The two fan-like structures will be fabricated out of stainless steel with words cut out in the metal. The artist’s concept is to have languages of the world represented. We hope this artwork will be a kind of time capsule for St. Cloud State showing what languages and cultures are represented on our campus.

This is the artist’s idea behind the text on the artwork:

  • The word/phrases on each gateway panel should relate, but can also stand on their own.  Each "line" of text will be comprised of a repetition of the same words, translated into various languages.
  • Up to 200 languages could potentially be used and will be a reflection of the languages spoken on campus and taught in classrooms.
  • Words should acknowledge or suggest:
    • Global ideas
    • Cultural communities
    • Multitude of languages spoken worldwide    
    • The college context: learning and knowledge
    • The campus site: on the Mississippi River
  • The words should be:
    • Open-ended meaning - creating a starting point for dialogue
    • Be culturally sensitive.

After a vote by staff, students and faculty in Lawrence Hall, the words “reflections” and “echoes” were chosen.

Meaning of Text: Both words represent the materials and nature of the artwork, the idea of the intellectual and university endeavor, and acknowledge the constant and necessary dialogue between cultures and languages. Reflections suggests to reflect on where we have been and where we are going. Echoes suggest how something (knowledge, information, cultural dialogue) is sent out and returns to the sender, changed, but still recognizable. Echoes and reflections are dynamic processes undergoing constant change.

Specifics: Text needs to be input on the computer in Lawrence Hall 113, so that we have font support and access to the file in one format. Translations and wordprocessing need to be complete by March 24, 2006. Both reflections and echoes should be translated.

A picture and model: of the artwork is available in Lawrence Hall, 115.

Questions can be addressed to Sarah Speir, Center for International Studies (sgspeir@stcloudstate.edu), or Shawn Jarvis, Foreign Languages (jarvis@stcloudstate.edu).

View a video about the Lawrence Hall sculpture and other art installations on campus.

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