Torch Sculpture Lighting in the Student Union

The student union is really the
crossroads of the campus. From the very inception, we talked about having a
campus living room, a place appropriate for anyone on campus:
students, faculty, staff to just come hang out and a place to be and be seen. During the design of the building, we’ve created this large double volume space with the
oculus in the middle that you see behind me. So we started doing some
brainstorming and the architects involved came up with this idea to
really create a piece working with a local artist to create a piece that
really gives us an opportunity to bring the whole idea of the torchbearer into
the building. The joint venture of Barber McMurray and McCarty Holsaple McCarty – Kelley Headden and I were in the Old City and we met Matthew Cummings
who’s a glass sculptor. And we talked to him about this project and
he became excited; we talked to the university about it they got excited; the
rest is history with the torch. This was a piece where we wanted to really do
something exceptional. When you walk into that room it has such a strong presence.
It is a powerful piece it’s not a subtle piece. It came out even better than we
had designed and we thought it was going to come out. We felt it was very
important at that major point in the building to have a very significant
element. It could not have turned out any better I don’t think. This is a constant
reminder of the fact that we believe that, for having been educated at
Tennessee, they have a responsibility to give to others. So any opportunity that we get to reinforce the importance of the
Torchbearers Creed is a really important part.

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