Clyde Lynds (b. 1936 )

Clyde Lynds is an innovative artist of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Born in Jersey City in 1936, Lynds is a native New Jersey sculptor. He is best known for his technique of mixing concrete sculptural forms with fiber optics, as well as his unique approach to incorporating history, astronomy and science. Many of his works are large and dramatic in scale, reaching sizes of up to sixty-five feet. Lynds began using this style in the late 1970s when his interests were sparked by the reflective qualities of lights when using fiber optics. Over the next thirty years he would create such artworks as "America Song" and Plumb and Rose," which tie together all of the elements he uses.

"America Song" is dedicated to the history of the site and is located at the Ted Weiss Federal Building in New York City.(1) The sculpture stands roughly thirty-two feet high (including electronics) and is representative of all the people in America, past and present, who have fought for liberty and equality. "Plumb and Rose," located in the Richard Stockton College Library, is dedicated to the school and is representative to the knowledge held within the library. It also depicts information specific to the college, such as the alignment of the stars on the night the school was founded.(2) "Plumb and Rose," like "America Song," is made of cast concrete with fiber optics incorporated throughout to light up different visual effects.

Lynds’ public sculptures in New Jersey include “Confluence,” a stainless steel fountain installation at State Capitol Plaza, Trenton; “Beacon,” a 65-foot light tower at the New Jersey Transit Station in Hamilton; and “Current,” a fiber optic and concrete mural featuring phosphorescent sea-life at the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University, New Brunswick. In addition to these works, his work can be found throughout the United States in such places as the Forbes Museum in New York and the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. His sculptures have been exhibited in museums as far away as Tokyo and London. Lynds is still a New Jersey resident and currently lives in Wallington.(CB)

(1) African Burial Ground-Commissioned Work (see link below).

(2) Kate Ogden, "The 'Thing' In The Library," The Argo of Richard Stockton College of New Jersey (1996), p.3.

(3) Department of Cultural Affairs - Percent for Art in NYC (see link below).

(4) Plane Crystals web site (see link below).

Plumb and Rose

All photographs by K.N. Ogden.

"Plumb & Rose" by Clyde Lynds was completed and dedicated in 1995 at the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. Typical of Clyde Lynds' work, "Plumb & Rose" is a concrete sculpture with fiber optics and incorportates the elements of astronomy and the history of the site where it is located. "Plumb and Rose" is located in the center of the the college library. It is a square sculpture, each side reaching approximate five feet. From the ceiling one floor above, there is a steel globe that hangs above the poured concrete sculpture. On the tabletop face of the sculpture are two large open books. They are representative of the library and college and the knowledge they have to offer.(1)

Incorporated throughout the surface are fiber optics depicting different images, including constellations and stars, casting an array of brilliant reflected colors. The alignment of the images is very important and unique to Stockton because they reflect what the sky looked like the night the college was founded on February 9, 1969. Lynds also introduces science by displaying the double helix, which is the scientific building block of all life forms. The globe, which hangs above the tabletop, represents the earth. Interestingly, Lynds tilted the earth to show the effect of the Holocaust, and the Holocaust Resource Center in the library sits in the direction of the tilt. Lynds is well known for creating works that are closely related to their surroundings, just as Plumb and Rose is unique to the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey. (CB)

(1) Kate Ogden, "The 'Thing' In The Library," The Argo of the Richard Stockton College of NJ (1996), p.3.

(2) African Burial Ground-Commissioned Work (see link below).

(3) Department of Cultural Affairs - Percent for Art in NYC (see link below).

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