The Simulation of George M. Karrer’s Workshop by artist Brower Hatcher is designed to conjure a memory of Karrer’s blacksmith shop, which once stood on the project’s site in the late 1800s. The stone base signifies the original foundation, while the green and gold wireframe matrix is constructed as if it were a computer simulation depicting the original building. Embedded artifacts overhead represent the activity of the workshop and tools of the trade. The artwork was commissioned in 2010 to celebrate Dublin’s bicentennial, by a jury that included Dublin Historical Society and community representatives. Located at the corner of South High Street and Waterford Drive, the site is the home of the historic Karrer barn, a bank barn built in the late 1870s and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The sculpture was completed and dedicated in 2011.
George M. Karrer came to Dublin from Germany in the 1850s. He built the barn on the site in 1876 with tools of his own making. He then relocated his blacksmith shop to the property from across the street and also operated platform scales to weigh large wagons for local farmers and merchants from a location next to the building. Karrer ran the farm with the help of his sons, but his primary business was serving the community with his technical craft. The wheelwright stone that he used to fit metal “tread” onto a wooden wagon wheel remained on the property and has now been incorporated into the artwork.
Artist Brower Hatcher, artistic director of Mid-Ocean Studio in Providence, R.I., was selected from a field of nearly 100 artists. His sculptures are primarily cellular matrices – multilayered and multicolored geometric frameworks fabricated from powder-coated, stainless steel rod. These colorful matrices create prismatic effects on their own, further enhanced by an embedded cloud of artifacts that relate to a site’s influences and culture, resulting in landmark public art that enhances the sense of community and place. Hatcher has created more than 40 public art projects throughout North America, including Passage, the red skywalk on the Columbus State Community College campus.