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Two houses become two words: one backward, one forward




If You Lived Here You'd be Home
2007


Two 28’ sculptures are installed on either side of the station overpass. The letterforms are constructed of materials taken from two houses in Maplewood, demolished in the fall of 2006. The artwork on the south of the overpass is the word “MAPLEWOOD” written backwards, made of original materials from the houses. The artwork on the other side, entering Maplewood, is the word “MAPLEWOOD” written forwards. For that word, the materials from the demolished houses were renovated. People driving into Maplewood see the forward facing word. They can read the word on the other side of the overpass in their rear-view mirrors, an illusion of Maplewood’s past.
The typography refers to an old Maplewood theater marquee.

"We drive into the future using only our rear view mirror." - Marshall McLuhan, 1967

at the Maplewood-Manchester station of the St. Louis Light Rail.
Commissioned by Metro Arts in Transit.
Two demolished houses, LED lighting, 28’ X 30” X 8”

Maplewood is known for its "characters,” its unique individuals. Some people have fondly called it "quirky." Many have spent their lives in Maplewood, but young people are moving in. There's nostalgia for the past alongside new development and renovation. People in Maplewood are looking forward and looking back.

At night, the letters are lit from behind, silhouetting them against the bridge.

Fabrication: AFX, Milwaukee, Adam Brown
Project Engineer: Franklyn Berry
Design assistant: Natalia Porter
Project manager: Shelly Willis
Metro Arts in Transit project manager: Hoang Nguyen
Metro Arts in Transit Director: David Allen
Photographs: Cathy Carver
Thanks to John Openlander and Tim Dunn in Maplewood, MO.

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