DeWitt Godfrey
2020 | Cor-ten Steel

DeWitt Godfrey is known for his large-scale, abstract steel sculptures. His signature stacked and tubular forms are inspired by nature. Reminiscent of plant spores, seashells and honeycombs, his diverse body of work spans three decades and features site-specific sculptures that interact with their setting. Indeed, Simon was conceived in relationship to its built environment. Its vertical orientation is accentuated by the surrounding townhouses whose brick facades interact with the warm coloring of the Cor-ten steel, a surface that weathers and continues to change over time. The title further references Reston’s founder, Robert E. Simon, Jr.

Simon placed in the 2021 CODAawards Top 100 Finalists!

 Artist Statement:

“My sculptures are grounded in responding to the environment of the physical site, the abstract geometry of the natural world, and community engagement. Combining cutting edge digital design with custom craftsmanship, my process of packing and stacking conical steel forms, like other kinds of stacking and arranging – from beehives, to soap bubbles, to dry-stack stonewalls – gives rise to extraordinary beauty and complexity. The individual parts of each sculpture form a community of distinct, yet dependent, elements, resulting in a physical metaphor for the relationships, connections, and diverse communities where the sculptures reside.

Working in the public realm is collaborative, requiring strong vision, an ability to listen, patience, and when necessary, to negotiate compromise. Successful public projects require working intimately and collaboratively with a wide array of constituents: community members and leaders, public art professionals, government agencies and officials, business owners, architects, engineers, suppliers, fabricators, contractors, and more. I regard these organizational ecosystems not unlike the architectural constraints against which my work takes form: as partners in the collaborative realization of these large-scale works.”

Nocturnal photos by Marco Rando.