The Presentation Sculpture
World-renowned artist Malcolm Grear has captured the spirit of the Ethics Advocate Award in a unique sculpture that is presented to the honoree. For 44 years a leading figure in American design, Mr. Grear is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the Rhode Island School of Design and is best known to Atlantans as the creator of the athletes’ medals and other design elements of the 1996 Summer Olympic Games. In 1998, he received the Claiborne Pell Award for Excellence in the Arts, an honor also given to Arthur Miller, Steven Sondheim, Toni Morrison, Robert Redford and Maurice Sendak.
The sculpture consists of a sphere within a crystal cube, resting on a patina bronze base bearing the honoree’s name. The cube is engraved with the words Perception, Reason, Desire.
Mr. Grear describes the symbolism of the design:
“The cube is reflective and seems to be lit from within, referencing a ‘light in the world.’ Suspended and placed directly in the center of the crystal cube is a semi-transparent sphere that seems to be floating. Such suspension references an inner control in the individual that Aristotle believed was of great ethical value. The physical sphere is made up of countless small points simultaneously forming one large point. The Ethics Advocate is an individual whose actions contain the possibility for positive influence of other individuals and thus a community.”
“The Ethics Advocate Award offers two things. First, it helps provides an opportunity for us to appreciate the choices the recipient has made, and to evaluate the positive influence of such championing. But second it involves a reflective sharpening of our own moral awareness and the possibility for the same new level of awareness within our community. This sculpture, a work of art, like advocacy itself, is a human being’s attempt to reach beyond the self, to tap into, if only for an instant, something higher; to communicate and affect change. Advocacy of ethics is a product of a well-lived life, the material for constructing a lasting work of art.”