Kelp Ceiling Sculpture
Palm Desert, California – Sculpture above kitchen island
Materials: nickel silver on a stainless steel
Suspended Ceiling: This sculpture was fabricated using nickel silver on a stainless steel support structure, with hand-blown glass elements. The unusual request was to mimic a kelp bed; organic shapes with bubbles and bits of flotsam, as seen from below. The architect had a clear idea of what was wanted, but not quite how to get there. After reviewing a number of paper mock-ups the parameters were set. Each piece of “kelp” was hand-cut, formed into a shallow, flowing dish, and curved back on itself. The textures are mirror polished or non-directional satin over the planished faces.
One challenge was to mount these irregular pieces to the structural grid without losing the “natural” form or letting the structural members be seen. Another was to install anchors in the unfinished, waving, pitched ceiling, such that the stainless cables would hang dead plumb. No turnbuckles were used.