Ed Shay

Acadian Gyro

1987
10' 8" x 5' 8" x 4' 8"
bronze
Gift of the artist in memory of Hector H. MacDonald, 1989.7


Born 1947, Boston, MA

Works in Carbondale, IL

Ed Shay discovers the meanings behind his sculptures during the process of creation. His forms are elemental, evocative, and universal, functioning as symbols of continuity, imbalance, change, destruction, and growth. Ascending toward the sky, Acadian Gyro is saturated with personal experiences and addresses reality as an individual construct. Many of Shay's ancestors settled in Acadia, and Acadian Gyro started as an exploration of his heritage. Building on leaf and branch forms, it developed from a primitive skeletal sculpture of a ship into a fish with winged oars. Shay explains, "The overall piece is a spiritual totem which I came to equate, quite unexpectedly, with my grandfather, Hector McDonald. I mounted the piece on a crudely fashioned rooftop structure much as a gyroscope ensures direction and stability as afforded by my heritage."