Cracked sculpture finds home in Chinatown

    A seventeen thousand pound sculpture that was spurned by its intended owner has found a happy foster parent in Chinatown North.

    A seventeen thousand pound sculpture that was spurned by its intended owner has found a happy foster parent in Chinatown North. A large translucent cube embedded with part of a tree was made by a Philadelphia artist for a sculpture garden in Michigan. But the cube was returned after cracks appeared in the resin.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090707pccube.mp3]

    Behind a chain-link fence at 12th and Callowhill, an 8-foot high blood-red cube appears to be frozen in mid-crumble. Cracks that appeared during the setting of the resin have become gaping crevices, surrounding the tree trunk holding the cube together.

    The cube is being stored in the lot of an electrical company whose owner has put it on display.

    At his own expense Bruce Shelley of Shelley Electric has installed artistic lighting and an identifying plaque for passersby.

    Shelley: You certainly can’t tell what it is unless you study it a bit. You get to see all the nooks and crannies, if you look deep enough – the bricks and the glass that was embedded in the root while it was growing.

    Shelley, whose family business has been in Chinatown North since 1954, says the broken artwork makes the industrial neighborhood more interesting.

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