Georgia Tech Kessler Campanile

Richard S. Hill - Artist

Approaching ASSI in 1991, Richard had a dream for a monument to adorn the heart of the Georgia Institute of Technology campus, an 80 foot tall stainless steel sculpture spiraling out of the ground in front of Georgia Tech's student center.  

When Richard came to ASSI he had started the drawings for the sculpture and realized the daunting task it was to produce just a plan. With no financing he agreed to let ASSI hold one of his art pieces "hostage" until some financing materialized.

A Math Equation

A Program Generated CAD Plan

The Program File

3D drawings generated by program code

Vic Williams (a Georgia Tech graduate) at ASSI realized that more than a drawing process, the drawings could be expressed as a mathematical expression and translated into a CAD program.

A Legacy to Georgia Tech

After the completion of the tower Georgia Tech adopted the shape of the tower's summit as it's logo.

From the Georgia Tech web site:

Georgia Tech has introduced a new look, aimed at providing instant recognition for those in the Tech community while conveying the Institute's purpose and no-nonsense approach to engineering education.

"Our new look draws from our history and traditions, yet expresses our commitment to innovation and moving forward," said Institute President Wayne Clough.

According to Amelia Gambino, director of Tech's Office of Publications, the new look is designed "to strengthen the image and name recognition of Georgia Tech through its strong visual impression and consistent use."

It was created following a nearly two-year study of how the Institute is viewed by the international audience and what symbols truly convey its tradition and mission.

The logo incorporates the new campanile at the Georgia Tech Plaza, inspired by Richard Kessler, IE '68. Atop the campanile in the logo is a modernized version of the Tech Tower, a svelte, heightened design suggestive of a steeple. It's accompanied by new type that incorporates both names: Georgia Tech and the Georgia Institute of Technology.

from the Spring 1996 Georgia Tech Tech Topics

By Hoyt Coffee

A new symbol for Georgia Tech rises from the campus plaza, an artistic blend of tradition and technology, a centerpiece for the Olympic Village.

A futuristic, 80-foot obelisk of stacked stainless-steel plates with a corkscrew-like twist, the Kessler Campanile looms over the new Georgia Tech Plaza, the town square of the Olympic Village where athletes will converge in a multicultural celebration of the '96 Games.

Capped with a stylized tribute to the Tech Tower, the spire is lit dramatically from within by four 150-watt halogen bulbs, the light bent by 3,904 glass rods sandwiched between the 244 metal plates, which are 48 inches square at the bottom and taper to less than 18 inches square at the top.

In its granite-faced base, surrounded by the fountain/stage at the center of the 300-seat plaza amphitheater, four huge speakers form the carillon that will belt out the "Ramblin' Wreck" fight song, "Tara's Theme" and other tunes selected by Bucky Johnson, Greg Colson and Ron Mendola of the Tech Music Department.

The campanile is the vision of artist Richard Hill and several Tech alumni, from engineers to physicists to machinists. At the top of that list is Richard Kessler, IE '68, MS IE '70, the former head of Days Inns who hoped to alleviate a "dearth of artistic inspiration on campus" by cosponsoring the plaza next to the Student Center with the classes of 1943 and 1953.

"It was clear that the plaza needed an artistic focus," Kessler said. "We wanted this to become a focal point for the campus. It needed to have a lot of presence. I wanted it to use light and music in some way, and that led to the campanile idea."

The campanile now takes its place as a new symbol and icon for Tech alongside the cherished Tech Tower.


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