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Public artwork on Lake Thoreau removed after wind damage

The high winds on Friday (Feb. 17) proved too much for public artwork installed by South Lakes High School’s STEAM club on Lake Thoreau’s spillway.

After high winds blew off several pieces of the artwork “Cerebral,” the exhibit was removed from the platform. Composed of aircraft cable, barrel swivels, wire, paint, solar panels and wood, the artwork was installed in June.

“RA’s CSF team safely recovered all the artwork pieces that ended up in the lake and removed the remaining pieces from the spillway on Saturday morning,” RA spokesperson Mike Leone said.

The pieces were returned to the school. As of now, it’s unclear if reinstallation is planned. Another artwork is planned for the same area this summer.

The county was under a wind advisory throughout Friday evening. Winds were reportedly traveling at 20 to 35 mph with gusts up to 50 mph, according to the National Weather Service. 

Developed under the guidance of SLHS art teacher Marco Rando, the sculpture aims to conceptualize the complexity of the brain. The brain and body is depicted as a cohesive force, challenging the idea of humans being left brained or right brained, according to nonprofit organization Public Art Reston.

The artwork is the eighth installed by the STEAM club. Students present designs to Public Art Reston and Reston Association’s Design Review Board for approval. According to Public Art Reston, the design is tested for durability, constructed by students, disassembled and then reinstalled on the spillway.

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