I thought zooming in might make it more interesting. Nope.

Now that the snow has melted I can resume my occasional series exploring public artwork in Ottawa. I’m sure you’re all thrilled. Well, don’t complain…I could be sharing my earworms instead. It IS Wednesday after all.

I toyed with calling this a lost artefact, but it’s highly visible, located right along the bike path on the Colonel By side of the Rideau Canal. But it’s also semi-hidden among a thicket of trees and shrubs, as though the NCC is actually ashamed to display this work of “aht.”

Well, if they’re not, they should be.

Elza Mayhew’s Meditation Piece has to be one of the dullest sculptures ever commissioned. Even the accompanying text is cleverly written to essentially call it “unexceptional”:

The sculptor has said that her work explores “shapes, verticals, and horizontals, projections, and hollows, plus certain graphic elements.” This bronze sculpture commissioned for expo 67 is no exception.

To me, it just seems so lazy – like no effort or thought was put into any part of it. Even the title, Meditation Piece, sounds so generic. To me it resembles a palette of small boxes, ready to be stored in a warehouse. In fact, if the artist had said something about it being a commentary on consumer culture, I might have had more respect for the fact that it’s basically a repetitive, nondescript cube with a dent in the top (which is usually full of water, and a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes).

Still, I can’t help but wondering if this wasn’t the inspiration for the Borg cube in Star Trek: TNG.


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