All kinds of messages emerge from these six typography sculptures, a collection entitled Words of Steel. Commissioned by the city of Palo Alto, California, the pieces were designed and built by creative public art team Joe O'Connell and Blessing Hancock. Each piece features a variety of multilingual phrases that are cut out of the steel and welded together into hollow rounded shapes.
All six of the pieces are located along the plaza between the Palo Alto Main Library and Arts Center. The artists say, “The evolving series increases in complexity and expresses growth through a sequence.” During the day, the steel forms sparkle in the sunlight and visitors can closely investigate the carved metal to learn more about the words. In the evening, LED lights illuminate each piece and cast large text shadows out onto the surrounding space. Through interactive controls, visitors can choose the colors of the sculpture and appreciate the glowing messages from a distance.