Martin Luther King Jr. Library : Tectonic Tables

Until I figure out where I want to stash these images, they'll be here for now. These images are from the The New Martin Luther King Library located in San Jose.

For this project, I worked with artist Mel Chin to come up with public art exhibits for the library, back in 2000. Mel wanted to integrate art into the library in such a way that people could interact with, ask questions about and ultimately, encourage them to learn using the surrounding books.

My concept was Tectonic Tables. Inspired by some of the other people on the team, I saw that we had free reign with many aspects of the library, down to the furniture. I thought about how many times during study groups while at San Jose State University, my friends and I would move tables around to accomodate everyone. I imagined the tectonic plates as they moved around, trying to accomodate all the forces they experience. It was easy after that to put the two together.

I suggested my idea to Mel during one of our workshops, and I'm glad it was accepted, but I'll admit that even I was blown away after seeing the end result.

Each table is in the shape of a tectonic plate that exists on Earth. Wheels have been added to the legs of the table to help with movement. Each tabletop is a 1 1/2 inch slab of granite, imported from the tectonic plate that table represents! It's absolutely beautiful.

It's currently on the 8th floor of the library, next to Folio Geology.


The pictures below are of me with the tables, and me with the Project Manager of the San Jose Public Art Program, Mary Rubin. Yes, I have a goofy smile. Yes, I'm beaming.