Falling Meteor 1975
Artist: Jerry Peart (American, b. 1948)
Materials: welded and painted aluminum
Provenance: Purchased by the Governors State University Foundation
Jerry Peart grew up in Winslow, Arizona and attended received a BFA from Arizona State University in 1970 and his MFA from Southern Illinois University in 1972. He moved to Chicago and joined a group of sculptors that included park artists Richard Hunt and John Henry.
In a statement written in 2006, Peart described the evolution of Falling Meteor, his first large-scale, public sculpture:
Falling Meteor . . . evolved into an abstract indication of the Meteor Crater, which is 14 miles west of Winslow, Arizona. The disk (the meteor), the interlocking shapes (the resulting impact site), and the horizontal element (the earthen Mesa which the Meteor struck) comprise the major elements of the sculpture . My sculpture did not start with the idea of a falling meteor but as an abstract conversation of forms used in (a) sort of language. This use of a language of forms is not unlike the notes for a musician or the words for a writer.
I had been working with . . . disk shapes that depict for me a sense of wholeness. These supporting shapes interlock to form a sense of communication with the accenting or dissenting disk. The last element, the long horizontal form . . . ties the sculpture's front to the back and to the ground.
Falling Meteor was conceived as a sculpture in the round, meaning it has differing views from each angle, which was my response to Minimal Art, so popular at that time. Inventing and manipulating forms is what I do as an artist, making real abstract ideas, using a vocabulary of personally significant shapes.