12151791 is a suspended timeline, a chronicle of individuals' contribution to decades of democracy and free speech. Hovering metal planes are supported by a series of structural chords: each chord represents a segment of time, each plane depicts a story of freedom. Beginning with the ratification of the First Amendment on December 15th, 1791, the timeline is organized in a perfect spiral. Continuing through 2041, the timeline will represent a 250-year commentary on the progression and debate of our freedoms.
The luminous planes are cut to the size of a standard sheet of 8.5" x 11" paper, bearing the words of an individual who has shaped the history of our First Amendment freedoms. The names are unfamiliar, but each story of great significance - the sculpture carries the ideals, passions and ultimate struggles of everyday people, creating a platform for the obscure voices of those who formed and nurtured our freedoms. Made of stainless steel, the thin planes are etched to allow the text of each story to penetrate the material ... each word forms an opening for light to pass and shadows to occur. The words are cast from plane to plane while images of visitor's are reflected in the metal - each piece of material becomes infused with a memory, a piece of history, a voice.
The spiral creates an opportunity for visitors to walk around the sculpture to experience the history of the text. Years are broken down to months, days, and specific events, creating an aerial documentation of the struggles to maintain our freedoms. Each chord represents a five-year period of time - this length is further segmented to accurately depict the exact point in time each quote was voiced. Every 1/8" of length on an individual chord represents one day in this suspended timeline, with each plane reflecting it's precise chronology. Steeped in history, 12151791 is a record of democracy - an ordered timepiece marking our past and reflecting the voices of the people.