Sol LeWitt, “Circle with Towers”

Sol LeWitt, “Circle with Towers”

  • <p>Sol LeWitt, Circle with Towers, 2005/2012. Concrete block, 168 × 308 inches diameter. Purchase, Landmarks, The University of Texas at Austin, 2011. Photo by Mark Menjivar.</p>
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Sol LeWitt, Circle with Towers, 2005/2012.

American, 1928-2007

Sol LeWitt, a pioneer of minimal and conceptual art, exhibited five structures in his first solo exhibition in 1965. With matter-of-fact titles like Floor Structure and Wall Structure, the rectangular black wood forms signaled his lifelong commitment to an elemental geometric vocabulary, as well as a sensitive consideration for the architectural context of his work. The wall is never merely a backdrop in LeWitt’s art; it assumes primary importance as a critical component in many of his three-dimensional structures and as the surface upon which his wall drawings are painted or drawn.

Circle with Towers is, in effect, a low circular wall capped at regular intervals by eight rectangular towers made of pale gray concrete blocks. The outdoor structure possesses a discernable logic and rhythm: the concrete towers are four blocks wide while the low walls between them are eight blocks wide—a perfect 1:2 ratio. The concrete block structures are laid by hand, one block at a time by local masons. Like many of LeWitt’s works, Circle with Towers demonstrates the artist’s generosity in welcoming others to interpret his work, including the artists and craftspeople who realize his artistic visions.

LeWitt introduced concrete block into his work in the 1980s. A humble material, it appealed to his interest in making art that privileged concepts over materials or surfaces. He also liked that the rectangular blocks could be stacked on end so that the cube, or square, becomes a repeating motif. While LeWitt’s work evolved in significant ways over the course of his career, the cube appears at each phase and in every medium, from sculpture to photography. The square and cube were both crucial elements in LeWitt’s vocabulary, both as elemental units and in reference to grids made by other artists throughout the twentieth century.

The following people worked on the installation:

John P. Adame, Christopher J. Alejos, Jesse Carbajal, Rico Aruizo Epifanio, Gustavo L. Gaytan, Isacc Hernandez, Alfredo Martinez, Oscar Martinez, Reymundo Medina, Robert Montalvo, Carl Bermudes Pacheco, Gerardo Sanoteli, Albert A. Suniga, Kenneth O. Tarter Jr., Arthur Trujillo, Francis Munoz Vazquez

The project was carried out by Rudd & Adams Masonry, Inc. under the supervision of Austin Commercial, contractors, and Jeremy Ziemann, Principal Oversight, Sol LeWitt Structures.

  • <p>Sol LeWitt, Circle with Towers, 2005/2012.  Photo by Mark Menjivar.</p>
  • <p>Sol LeWitt, Circle with Towers, 2005/2012. Photo by Sandy Carson.</p>

Location: Speedway entrance to The Bill & Melinda Gates Computer Science Complex & Dell Computer Science Hall (GDC)

GPS: 30.286235, -97.737111