The community is invited to an opening reception for “Passing Through,” the new permanent public art installation completed as part of Phase II of construction at Tunxis Community College, on Thursday, March 6, from 4-7 p.m. in the 600 Building Extension 2nd Floor Atrium. Artist Brad Guarino and Tunxis students who participated in the project will be available to talk about their roles in the art installation. Refreshments will be served.
“Passing Through” is a series of 50 life-sized stainless steel silhouette figures and inanimate objects placed in various locations on the walls of the 600 Building. A total of 33 Tunxis participants modeled for the silhouttes, some of whom are represented twice. The 29 Tunxis students shown were selected through an essay competition in which they were asked to discuss their journey to Tunxis.
Those who would like to see the works online will soon be able to view them on the Tunxis website at https://www.tunxis.edu/passingthrough, where viewers will be able to identify students by their silhouettes and read their stories.
“‘Passing Through’ is a metaphor for the educational experience—for overcoming obstacles, leaving the past behind, and striving for a better future,” said artist Brad Guarino. “The interactions between figures suggest the sense of a supportive community—of people accompanying and helping one another on a journey.”
The $117,000 project was commissioned by the state of Connecticut, and is required by a Connecticut law which states that 1% of the cost of construction or major renovation of publicly accessible state buildings be allocated for the commission or purchase of artworks.
Artist Brad Guarino resides and works in New London and is adjunct faculty at the University of Connecticut and Eastern Connecticut State University. He did postgraduate study at Bulgaria’s National Academy of Art on a Fulbright Fellowship, and holds an MFA. For more on Guarino, see his website: www.bradguarino.com.
The new 600 Building Extension, completed in August 2013 during Phase II of construction, is one of several new spaces completed at Tunxis Community College during a major campus expansion project. Phase II added 56,000 square feet of space to campus, providing additional classroom space while easing the wear on some aging buildings on campus. The new extension includes 15 general purpose classrooms, two computer labs, a writing lab, math lab, and an early childhood education program classroom. In the future, the third floor will have college offices and conference/meeting space. A certified LEED green building, the project expanded the College campus to 292,000 square feet.
Tunxis is located at the junction of Routes 6 and 177 in Farmington.