Hockaday Centennial Project

The unique 30 feet tall, 9 feet wide, and 5 feet deep Centennial Sculpture is hanging completed and installed in the Lyda Hill STEM Institute. Designed by the Hockaday students and incorporating recycled glass tiles made by students, staff and faculty. This piece combines STEAM Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math concepts throughout the process from idea to installation.

Led jointly by Carlyn Ray and Susan Sanders of the Hockaday School guiding the students to the design and creation of the glass.  Built and engineered by John Christian Designs metal company.

​Fall 2012

  • Carlyn toured with 5th, 6th, and 7th graders at the Dallas Arboretum for Dale Chihuly's show​

  • Carlyn was a visiting artist and talked to the different student groups about art and her journey

  • The Legacy project celebrating the school Centennial was proposed

  • The project was introduced to the student body and community

  • ​Funding was started for the project

Spring & Summer 2013

  • Idea Boards were created for the students

  • Carlyn met regularly with art students to continue brainstorming

  • Discussed Engineering parameters & collaborated with GFF for cable attachment points above the ceiling

  • Themes and ideas were gathered by students and models were proposed via videos to seniors

  • At Hockaday, Susan Sanders worked on prototypes of molds and presented process to the girls.

  • Field trips to Carlyn's studio to experience and pull out glass and learn to weld metal

Fall 2013

  • Students, faculty, and staff members of Hockaday made individual tiles with the recycled glass

  • The chosen proposal was presented to upper school math students for further design

    • discussed the area of the space and the size of the sculpture

    • examined different metals, understanding weight constraints

    • overall engineering of the sculpture: requirements, parameters and constraints 

    • 2 different designs were created by the math classes

      • -samples of both chosen designs were created and voted upon

Spring 2014

  • Middle schoolers made paper 3D models

  • At Hockaday, glass tiles were cast in the kiln daily 

  • CAD drawing was created based off paper models

Summer 2014​

  • Initial prototype was created

  • Metal was designed with tiles on vine and panels via students' feedback

  • Metal tetrahedrons were individually created

Fall 2014

  • Each tetra was made out of wood and hung fully in it's space

  • This was to better understand the sculpture for:

    • design and aesthetic purposes

      • Lighting

      • Maintenance and building requirements

      • Fire Code

    • After the mock up, each tetra had either a number or a letter

    • Each attachment was examined and drawn out

  • We were able to better understand how to install based on the number of tetras allowed in the space and as a group

  • Sculpture was broken into sections

Spring/Summer 2015

  • Kiln was delivered to Carlyn's studio Dallas Glass Art 

  • The rest of the Hockaday tiles were cast

  • The recycled plate glass panels were reconfigured to fit the tetras

  • Resin was attached on the back of each panel for reinforcement and also to hold on the hardware

Fall 2015


  • Finalized materials and design of the tetra

  • Created each individual tetra

  • Students choose surface treatment and color

  • Joints and attachments for each section

    • Weld joints or various designed moveable joints

  • Vine construction

    • composition, tile spacing, types of spacers, and hardware

  • Attachments of the vine to the tetras- engineering

Spring 2016

  • Mock up sculpture

    • created a multi story scaffolding structure simulating site space

    • established installation protocol contingent on tetra interaction

    • changed joint attachment to accommodate added weight of tiles and panels

  • Creation of Cloud concept to expand on GFF's mounting points

  • Installation procedure and plan created

  • Documention noted


Summer 2016

  • Set up the space and laid out all of the glass

    • organized by vine and panels

  • Bringing the lift into the building and setting up area 

  • Installing the 'cloud' to the ceiling

  • Installed Tetras

    • group by group and piece by piece 

  • Students helped feed the individual tiles on each vine

  • Vines were attached to the tetra group then each plate glass panel  

  • It was a long and very detailed process.  It definitely took a patient team!

The final piece is a one of a kind.  

  • piece was an educational experience with a product which will symbolize STEAM teamwork

  • details of the finished piece highlight the planning, hard work, and creativity used in this creation 

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