South Lakes High School STEAM Team
Installation on the Lake Thoreau Spillway July 2019 | Wood, paint, metal brackets

STEAM Public Art Club: Leslie Mills, Morgan Ryan, Catherine Lashley, Phoebe Liu, Sarah Mamros, Pramod Mamillapalli, Marley Elmore-Avo, Liz Milausnic, Alisha Basra, Gillian, Hannah Blackmore, Gweneth Wagner, Mariam Scheik, Clarisse Cubas-Lopez, MacKenzie Krider, Gangmu Liu

STEAM Team Statement:

Spectrum is the sixth sculpture by the South Lakes STEAM Team, made up of five wooden interlocking rectangular prisms of different sizes and colors. After two years of creating sculptures with strong conceptual origins that featured minimalist color palettes, STEAM decided to change direction and create a sculpture that prioritized an exploration of aesthetic elements over a representation of a tangible theme. To do so, STEAM started out with one of the most basic geometric forms, the cube, with the intention for the emergence of an infinitely more complex, powerful, and unique form. The end result is Spectrum, a celebration of line, form, and color, unleashing the potential and power in the austerity of the formal elements employed in the sculpture.  More specifically, basic line accentuated by its rainbow palette; a conglomeration of neon hues, and soft gradients similar to strawberry sherbets and dusky sunsets. The process of constructing the sculpture became a form of beacon for students who had not been involved in the sculpture thus far. In other words, a congregation of students turned out to collaborate in fabricating the sculpture, students that were not the weekly attendees through-out the year. The students drawn to the beacon of fabrication and construction are students of multiple social clicks, racial and ethnic description and academic success who sought to take part in something greater than the self. The diverse students worked together with STEAM to create a substantive and expressive contribution to our community. In essence, they instinctively came together to create the proverbial village.

Contributing Students: Joshua Aguilar-Garcia, Roshdy Bayoumi, Marco Bravo, Jennifer Torres, Arika Fields, Oistin Binaj, Clark Castro, Alexandru Aga, Lisette Arias, Jammel Chinas Munoz, Joshua Jacobs, William Alfaro, Wael Awad, Aniq Bhatti, Rebeca Castro, Edward Dermota, Darwin Miguel, Skylar Montgomery, Miles Boyd, Shannon Gallagher. Taurea Lewis, Alex Horten-Greer, Virginia Horvath, Audrey Kelley, Victor Lopez-Miranda, Hannah Porter

This project was realized under the guidance of Marco Rando, South Lakes High School Photo/Art/Design Teacher. Special thanks to Gaetano Rando, James Pan, and Stefan Greene.

Project Partners: South Lakes High School, Reston Association, and Public Art Reston

Project Sponsors: Lake Thoreau Entertainment Association, Mary and David Prochnow, MOD Pizza Reston, Hope & Hayes McCarty, Priscilla Miller, and E. T. Conrad

Watch the STEAM Team’s presentation to the Reston Association Design Review Board, the presentation starts at 34:53 and ends at 49:00. 

Project History:

Spectrum was the sixth temporary installation for the Lake Thoreau spillway realized by students at South Lakes High School (SLHS) through the STEAM Team after school program. In 2012, Lake Thoreau resident James Pan approached Reston Association (RA) with the idea of involving SLHS students in transforming the unattractive, concrete spillway platform into a work of art. RA connected Pan with Public Art Reston who saw an opportunity to create a more enriching learning experience by having students follow the same criteria required to fulfill a professional public art process. Through the initial financial support of Pan, RA and Public Art Reston partnered to SLHS and art teacher, Marco Rando, to lead the STEAM Team after school program. Over the course of a school year STEAM Team members gain real world experience in all aspects of the design, development and construction of a public work of art. Members create design concepts and present them to the Public Art Reston Public Art Committee and the RA Design Review Board for final approval. The final design is tested for durability and constructed by students at the high school where it is disassembled and then reinstalled on the spillway by RA staff for all community members to engage with over the course of the installation.