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Fallen Star Lands on Jacobs Hall


A scene right out of "The Wizard of Oz," with a few modern twists, took place Nov. 15 at the Jacobs School of Engineering. A small house landed on top of Jacobs Hall (EBU1), hoisted by one of the largest cranes in the United States. It was all part of the installation of a new sculpture by artist Do Ho Suh for the Stuart Collection, which brings site-specific works of art to campus.

The work, titled Fallen Star, features a three-quarter-sized version of a house in Providence, R.I. The entire sculpture consists of the house, cantilevered at an angle from the corner of Jacobs Hall, surrounded by a roof garden.

Fallen Star was built to withstand winds of 100 mph and conforms to California earthquake building codes. The concrete foundation is 18 inches thick, compared to 4 inches on a regular house. The house weighs in at about 70,000 pounds.

The work is supported entirely by private donations to the Stuart Collection and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. The Jacobs School already is home to two other pieces in the collection: Bear, in the Engineering Courtyard, and Vices and Virtues at the Powell Structural Systems Laboratory.

Fallen Star should be completed in early 2012. Information on visiting the sculpture will be available from the Stuart Collection.

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