A familiar outdoor sculpture at Ripon College has been given a facelift

The sculpture “Synchronicity,” by Ann and Kim Pahlas, is installed between Smith and East halls on the campus. It was created in 2000 as a gift from the class of 1998.

“After more than two decades outside, it really needed work,” says Travis Nygard, associate professor of art history. “The College hired the Pahlas Metalworks studio of Ripon to refurbish the work by taking off all of the old paint, doing any needed repairs, and repainting. It now has been restored and reinstalled.”

In addition to making sculptures, the Pahlas’s are known in the area for doing custom metalwork for architecture and unique metal furniture. “Synchronicity” was an original idea that Ann Pahlas designed and Kim Pahlas built.

Kim Pahlas finds his line of work to be valuable to a campus community such as Ripon because sculptures can stimulate memories and new ideas. “I think that’s the key to artwork in general,” he says. “It affects people.”

He also finds restoring old work to be rewarding. “It’s nice to restore your own work. We were happy to bring (“Synchronicity”) back to its original look,” he says.

Agreeing with this sentiment, Nygard adds: “I love to see artwork given new life, and I am excited that the community will be able to see this sculpture as the artists intended. It is one of my favorite pieces of public sculpture on campus.”

Nygard says the public is always welcome to look at the sculptures on campus and walking tour brochures for campus sculpture are available by the front doors of C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts.

“’Synchronicity’ and other sculptures are on upper campus near the historic buildings, and other works surround C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts as part of the Caestecker Sculpture Garden,” he says. “It is a great place to walk and enjoy art.”

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