The sculptures were produced in the 1960s by Cornell undergraduate architecture students. Under the guidance of professor Jack Squier, these students learned first-hand about sculpture, design, and carpentry. They volunteered their own time and money toward the project, and participated in every aspect of the planning and construction of the sculptures. The sculptures were erected before the arboretum existed, and the location was very secluded and isolated from the main campus at the time.
After the arboretum was created, and the accessibility of the site improved, the sculptures quickly became a focal point of the arboretum. Industrial Design magazine has praised the Sculpture Garden as one of the most exciting and successful projects for training architects in the country. Among these abstract, ten-ton concrete sculptures are plantings include yellowwood trees, a large Japanese pagoda tree, a Kentucky coffee tree, a sweet gum, and a katsura tree.
Click here to view a plant list for this collection (pdf file, 7 pages).
Click below to hear a two-minute audio narrative about the Sculpture Garden.