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Grounds For Sculpture - Steve Tobin Sculpture

Steve Tobin Sculpture Grounds for Sculpture
Aerial Roots by Steve Tobin Steelroots,
2009, steel, rust patina, 12 x 13 x 24 feet.
(Photo by Kenny Ek)
By Hunterdon County Democrat

Grounds For Sculpture in Hamilton makes major moves with outdoor expansion and inaugural sculpture exhibition

HAMILTON - Internationally renowned Grounds For Sculpture, a premiere New Jersey cultural destination, is making news again. On Oct. 1 at 2 p.m. the now 42-acre sculpture park and arboretum in Hamilton, will open for the first time ever The Meadow-its new seven-acre outdoor sculpture gallery, with a year-long inaugural exhibition titled Aerial Roots by Steve Tobin.

The Meadow, rescued from years of neglect, represents a nearly 20 percent expansion of the famed sculpture garden, ready to give its 150,000 annual visitors even more to explore, discover, and enjoy. Unlike the more manicured environment of the Grounds For Sculpture's other 35 acres, The Meadow is a largely untamed field of grasses, wildflowers and trees on which have been sited 28 of Steve Tobin's monumental steel sculptures. These abstract but humanlike forms seem to dance and crawl across the landscape and their tendrils and arms reach up toward the sky casting ever-changing shadows and suggesting calligraphy drawn in the air.

Nearly a year in the making, the site features include gently rolling berms, a long allee of cypress trees, meandering paths and a rain pond. Wildflowers will bloom in spring, summer and fall. It's a different, exciting side of Grounds For Sculpture and one, like the rest of the park, that will be in a continual state of evolution. With its openness and visual accessibility to the surrounding community, The Meadow is the latest feature in the ongoing development of the Hamilton Township Art and Cultural District.

Steve Tobin has been referred to by art critics as a visual philosopher, and his vast repertoire includes works in glass, clay, bronze and steel. Aerial Roots represents his latest evolution as an artist, a progression from a naturalist to a modernist. The sculptures, which he calls Steel Roots are inspired in part by Asian calligraphy. They are more abstract, simple and monumental than his earlier actual bronze castings of tree roots and they capture a sleek sense of the power of natural forms.

The sculptures in Aerial Roots range from human-scale shapes that appear to dance and dual to massive structures soaring gracefully through space, almost mystical in their cryptic calligraphy and stark shadows. With Aerial Roots, Tobin presents viewers with a dramatic interplay of art and nature that transforms Grounds For Sculpture's new wildflower meadows and groves into a playground for the senses.

The Meadow and Aerial Roots open to the public on Oct. 1 at 2 p.m. with a ribbon-cutting ceremony by Hamilton Township Mayor John C. Bencivengo. Aerial Roots, free with admission to the park, will remain on view through summer 2012. Grounds For Sculpture is open year-round, Tuesday through Sunday, from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Admission is $12/adults, $10/seniors, $8/students (6-17), and free to members and children under 5. For directions and more information, visit

Steve Tobin, born in Villanova, PA, and a graduate of Tulane University with a degree in theoretical mathematics, pursued his artistic career with studies in glass at the famed Pilchuck Glass School in Washington State and Penland School of Crafts in North Carolina. In 1989 he became the first foreigner invited to build his own glass studio in Murano, Italy and in 1994 built his first foundry, and began to cast bronze. Tobin's work is included in prestigious collections and museums throughout the United States. He currently works and resides in Bucks County, PA.

For further information about the artist, or to schedule an interview, please contact Artist's Representative Kathleen Rogers, 207-667-0733, ext. 11. Grounds For Sculpture, located in Hamilton (midway between Philadelphia and New York), is a 42-acre sculpture garden and arboretum on the former site of the New Jersey State Fairgrounds. Founded by Seward Johnson to promote an understanding of and appreciation for contemporary sculpture, the park has been enchanting visitors since 1992. Grounds For Sculpture features more than 270 contemporary sculptures, and two 10,000 square foot museum galleries with rotating exhibits. In addition, the park offers workshops for children and adults, concerts, performances, fairs, shopping and fine dining at the Zagat's-rated Rat's Restaurant.

Visit for more information.

Spatial Thoughts on Sculpture by Bill West
When you couple a great Sculptor and a great Sculpture Park, you have Steve Tobin and Grounds For Sculpture. This cultural facility for some of the great sculpture in the world is just not to be missed. Grounds For Sculpture should be on everyione's bucket list! Steve Tobin's sculptural creations lend themselves, or I should say INTEGRATE so well here. The fall of the year is such an excellent time to visit - well, what are you waiting for?