University staff


Phoenix Building sculpture installed

An exciting and ambitious sculpture has been installed on the side of the new Institute of Digital Innovation, the Phoenix Building, on Woodlands Road.

Cactal sculpture The sculpture, entitled Cactal, combines futuristic design by internationally renowned artist Simeon Nelson with the skilled engineering by North East based steel fabricators Architectural Metalworkers.

Cactal is based on a digital organism. It represents a process of self-generation that has been frozen at a particular moment. It is the latest in a series of works by Simeon Nelson that addresses the historic relationship between sculpture, ornament and architecture.

Simeon Nelson said, ‘Cactal reflects the internal activity of the building and its external effect on the growth and expansion of its core activities into the wider cultural, social and economic arena.’

Dr Jim TerKeurst, Director of the Institute of Digital Innovation, said, ‘It's a terrific sculpture and represents the creative use of digital technology and the impressive metal craft skills and capabilities of the North East. We have aspirations to take the University of Teesside and DigitalCity to new heights and Simeon Nelson's Cactal is a visual expression of this goal as it reaches up and across our new Phoenix Building.’

Professor Graham Henderson, Vice-Chancellor of the University, said, ‘The University landscape is enriched by this innovative and thought-provoking work of art. I am delighted that our wonderful new Phoenix Building is associated with this work by Simeon Nelson. It enriches our campus and, indeed, the Tees Valley itself.’

17 February 2008 | Grapevine 71