Seven new sculptures adorn East Campus

Compiled by Liam McInerney

Pima Community College’s East Campus has added seven new sculptures to its landscape as part of an ongoing Sculpture-On-Campus project.

The artists and their works are:

  • · Jason Breitenbucher, “Solvolaré”
  • · Jason Butler, “Donald Judd, The Cubes Alone Were Never Enough!”
  • · Kevin Caron, “Wherever You Go, There You Are”
  • · Joe Dal Pra, “Control and Obsession 2”
  • · Elizabeth Frank, “Earth and Sky”
  • · Barbara Jo McLaughlin, “Anticipation”
  • · Joan Waters, “ultimate reality show”

Dal Pra and McLaughlin are both full-time PCC art instructors, and Butler is an adjunct instructor.  Butler, Caron and Waters have previously displayed other works on campus.

East Campus has displayed 19 sculptures since the project began in 2004.

Participation is open to all Arizona residents. Each artist commits to a minimum time for the selected work to be displayed, but many leave their works much longer.

East Campus art instructor Mike Stack, who helps coordinate the project, said his group chooses sculptures that inspire the type of creative thinking that is essential for any academic institution.

Here’s a look at five artists who responded via email to Aztec Press inquiries:



Jason Butler

Sculpture: “Donald Judd, The Cubes Alone Were Never Enough!”

Describe the title of your sculpture:

“The title references a minimalist sculptor, Donald Judd, who made very sterile, exact cubes that were placed flat on the floor and empty. I always felt there was no human touch with Judd’s work.”

Describe your sculpture:

“The cubes are up and not placed flat on the floor. They are filled with what one thinks are curvy shapes that are erupting out and the corners peeled back, something Judd would never allow.”

What defines you as an artist?

“I am attracted to the common, strong, historic and industrial nature of steel. I transform off-the-shelf shapes toward a higher level of creative expression through forging, bending and twisting.”


Kevin Caron

Sculpture: “Wherever You Go, There You Are”

Describe your sculpture:

“My artwork is the large torus outside the west entrance of the library. I believe my title is a great name because the torus is a three-sided, single-plane object so you never get to a different side. It only has one side. Accordingly, wherever you start, you end back at the same place. It took eight months to build and a large part of my work space.”

What is the inspiration behind your design?

“My inspiration was a love of the geometric design and the complex but simple shape. It is a great metaphor for your journey through life. Not only do you start in one place and travel through your early, middle and later yours, you start as a helpless being and often end up as one, too.”

How does it feel to have your artwork on display?

“Like any good parent, I feel a sense of pride seeing my work in a public setting. I love seeing people stop to look and understand what they are seeing. Anytime I can help people see things in a new way or touch them emotionally, I feel I am succeeding as an artist.”

Joe Dal Pra’s “Control and Obsession 2”


Joe Dal Pra

Sculpture: “Control and Obsession 2”

Describe your sculpture:

“It is imagery of industrial and non-industrial stereotype/figures of the 1800s shown opposite each other to ponder the relationship of the two. Caricatures of Western industrialist and the Western view of non-west people as an exotic other, look across at each other on a steel tower structure. The form of the structure references early train trestles and oil drilling towers.”

What is the inspiration behind your design?

“An interest in the dynamic of human conflict and cooperation. And, rather loosely, the book ‘Dominance and Affection’ by Yi-Fu Tuan.”

How does it feel to have your artwork on display?

“Very nice, very nice indeed.”


Barbara McLaughlin

Sculpture: “Anticipation”

Describe your sculpture:

“My sculpture is painted with auto body paint with a UV blocker to withstand the harsh Arizona sunshine. It is designed as an abstracted wave and is located on the edge of the wash that runs through the campus.”

What is the inspiration behind your design?

“I wanted to design something that was site specific to the East Campus. I chose to place a wave on the bank of the wash to create expectation as the wash anticipates the water that will fill it during monsoon storms. I have always loved the Japanese print, ‘The Great Wave’ by Hokusai and began with this idea. Working with fiberglass always makes me think of Corvettes and the piece began to take on a retro look with the color that I chose to paint it: a turquoise that was used on old Corvettes.”

How does it feel to have your artwork on display?

“As a very dear friend of mine once said, ‘Art is a language and I don’t enjoy talking to myself.’”


Joan Walters

Sculpture: “ultimate reality show”

Describe your sculpture:

“The sculpture is made of sheets of steel with a plasma cutter, bent and welded together. It is located outside the student center and positioned so people coming out the door can see the courtyard activity through the TV screen. I did all the work myself and when it was finished, I applied patinas to give it the rusted, weathered look.”

What is the inspiration behind your design?

“The television set creates a viewing frame for the public to observe daily life – the ‘ultimate reality show’. The sculpture isolates a view of the world and challenges to viewer to consider it in a new way. The iconic television set is based on the design of an antique model. One of the questions the sculpture asks us to consider is how our perceptions of life are created or altered by viewing two-dimensional images on TV.”

How does it feel to have your artwork on display?

“I’m excited to have my work at the campus. I hope people will interact and have fun with it, as well as consider it food for thought.”

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