Member Kudo: George Heagle
Tuesday, September 18, 2012 at 2:18PM
albertacraftcouncil in Kudo

George Heagle (Edmonton) has been awarded a major commission to build a sculptural desk for the City of Lethbridge’s new Community Arts Centre. There was a call for submissions over three provinces. The desk is to be installed this fall. George writes about his winning proposal:
“To be successful, the reception desk of any public building must satisfy a wide range of complex and sometimes contradictory criteria. It must integrate with the rest of the foyer, but must also stand out. Even though it acts as a barrier between the public and more private areas of the building, people must be drawn to it....To integrate the desk with the foyer I have reflected the rectilinear form and concrete block structure of the building in the overall shape of the desk and by the use of wooden 'bricks' in the design. But to help it stand out, the desk contrasts with the rest of the foyer in some important ways. Rather than the hard, reflective surfaces of glass and polished concrete that comprise the interior space, the desk is constructed of wood. Natural and tactile. This material will absorb the wonderful light flooding the interior and emit back a warm glow, drawing visitors toward the desk. In contrast to the more generic surfaces of the interior, I employ the front of the desk as a 'canvas' upon which to paint a picture of the Lethbridge area: the co-joining of prairie and foothills, the big sky and warm light, the erosion of the coulees, the tall grasses blowing in the ever present wind.
Taken together, the warmth and texture of the woods will offer a pleasant contrast to the hard, polished surfaces of the building's interior. And the abundant natural light will play across the three dimensional, textured surface of the desk front. These small, shifting shadows will change its appearance throughout the day, bringing subtle drama to the space. By its nature, the symbolic imagery of the desk front speaks to the energy of the people who live in the area and to the many activities which will take place in this new community arts centre.”

Article originally appeared on Alberta Craft Council (
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