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Convergence is a three-dimensional array of engineering equations cut out of steel ribbons. The sculpture creates a monument to engineering that abstractly visualizes the process of thinking. Each ribbon depicts a series of equations moving through space akin to a student working through these ideas in their mind. From a distance, the sculpture appears to be a series of flowing bands, but as students look closer they will discover a litany of different symbols, letters, and equations.

The piece includes equations that are significant to specific fields of engineering as well as equations that have broad use across differing fields. The sculpture includes formulas ranging from basic concepts to complex ones; allowing students to discover and understand new details in the artwork as they progress through their education. The blending of equations from different fields in the ribbons alludes to the connections between the programs and the opportunity to explore different areas of study. Taken as a whole, the ribbons embody a sense of trajectory and movement as they flow upward and out. The individual elements come together to achieve a cohesive visual movement contributing to the idea that disparate fields of study come together within the school of engineering for the same goals.

Convergence is an artwork exploring the language of engineering meant specifically to engage the minds of its pupils. The piece invites its audience to decipher the piece, searching for equations they understand while also pondering the equations they don’t. We worked directly with The University of Iowa to collect equations that were significant to its student body, assuring that as they progress through their coursework they’ll continuously recognize new equations. This makes Convergence a piece that they can return to time after time as they grow into their engineering studies.




University of Iowa Seamans Center, Iowa City, IA


40’ x 8’9” x 7’5” 


powder-coated steel

Commissioning Agency: 

University of Iowa


Joe O'Connell


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