“WOODBRIDGE: HISTORY CONVEGENCE”

Glass Artwork for  Platform Shelters

SUGGESTED FOR

NJ TRANSIT STATION

Woodbridge, New Jersey

PROPOSAL BY
J. KENNETH LEAP
Architectural Glass Designer

PRESENTED: 03/28/2005

STATEMENT OF INTENT

In preparing this proposal I spent some time exploring the neighborhoods of Woodbridge and performed initial research at the town library. I looked at old maps and learned a little of the local history. Vast deposits of clay led to the rise of brick making as an important local industry. The oldest original township in NJ, Woodbridge was a cross roads in which the railroads figured prominently. As one advertisement by a land developer explained “The railroads and trolleys allowed the rise of a commuter culture that could escape the tenements of New York City for the relative rural comforts of suburban living.” These promises appear to have become a reality, as many neighborhoods near the station maintain a small town feel. In 1964 Woodbrige was awarded the title of “The All American City” . As I looked at the faces in the historic photos I began to wonder  what dreams and aspirations today’s residents share with their forebears.

I have selected the four glass shelters on the station platform for the location of my artwork proposal. On one side of each shelter I will create a collage of images using historic photographs and drawings as a reference. Prominent in the composition will be a single large figure.  I would then contact members of the community and find current residents to mirror the pose of the historic figure for a contemporary retelling of the same theme the opposite side of the shelter. The scale of the artwork should be visible at a distance from the elevated platform. Small details and descriptions of the images will draw in the close observer.

For this proposal I have select four themes from the images that came to light during my initial research: Schools, Industry, Gardening & The Railroad. Ultimately I expect these themes to develop as a balance between the availability of original historic source material and input from the community.

MATERIALS AND TECHNIQUES

The Artist will scan and digitally prepare historic photographs obtaining all rights and permissions for use as may be required. Imagery will be created using Dupont SentryGlas Expressions Interlayer Film. This material consists of architectural quality pigments printed onto a UV resistant film. The product will then be laminated between 2 layers of heat toughened float glass.

VANDALISM

Both the Artist and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts will maintain archival copies of the final designs. One advantage of the materials chosen is in the event a panel is destroyed an identical copy can be fabricated from the original designs in a comparatively short period and at minimal cost as compared with a hand painted or screen-printed panel.

MAINTENANCE & WARRANTY

Although not impervious to surface scratching or breakage by a determined vandal, panels made of heat tempered glass are significantly stronger, with a tougher surface, than regular plate glass. As the imagery will be encapsulated between the glass layers it will require no special cleaning or maintenance. It can be subjected to the same periodic surface cleaning as ordinary plate glass windows. The manufacturer will provide a warranty against delamination.