How sweet it is! Sugar sculpture weighs 8,000 pounds Four tons of sugar were used to create the 35-foot-high sphinx-like sculpture
How sweet it is! Sugar sculpture weighs 8,000 pounds
Lexile

A 35-foot-tall sphinxlike sculpture made of sugar is on display at an old New York City factory. It is a tribute to black workers.

Artist Kara Walker's monumental installation occupies much of the cavernous interior of the former Domino Sugar Refinery. The former refinery is in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn.

Four tons of sugar was used to create the female figure. There are several smaller sculptures of young boys covered in molasses with fruit baskets holding unrefined sugar.

A sweet aroma still fills the air in the shuttered factory.

The artist is known for exploring issues of race, discrimination and power in her work.

The full title of the work is very long. It is: "A Subtlety or the Marvelous Sugar Baby an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant."

The head of the large sculpture wears a kerchief. It has slightly exaggerated African features.

Walker has described the pose as both submissive and domineering.

She said in an interview with Complex Magazine that she thought of the sphinx as "this woman-like creature or guardian of the city, the keeper of the riddle, the devourer of heroes."

Critical thinking challenge: What does the artist mean by unpaid and overworked Artisans?

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COMMENTS (50)
  • Maggie3-22-02
    5/19/2014 - 08:18 a.m.

    That is so cool! I wonder how you would make something like that? I wish I could eat it all! I also wish I knew how long it took to make it.

  • isaiah12321
    5/19/2014 - 11:10 a.m.

    Four tons of sugar was used to create the female figure. There are several smaller sculptures of young boys covered in molasses with fruit baskets holding unrefined sugar.

    A sweet aroma still fills the air in the shuttered factory.

    The artist is known for exploring issues of race, discrimination and power in her work.

    The full title of the work is very long. It is: "A Subtlety or the Marvelous Sugar Baby an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant."

    The head of the large sculpture wears a kerchief. It has slightly exaggerated African features.

    Walker has described the pose as both submissive and domineering.

    She said in an interview with Complex Magazine that she thought of the sphinx as "this woman-like creature or guardian of the city, the keeper of the riddle, the devourer of heroes."

  • TaylorT01
    5/19/2014 - 11:26 a.m.

    wow that is really one big suger sculpture, but not as big as the biggest in the world the largest igloo 80ft high, i would touch this all i would say

    • Ak28cheetah
      5/19/2014 - 01:01 p.m.

      That's amazing! I wonder how long it took to build it and how they got it to stick, so it wouldn't fall apart. It probably took thousands of sugar packs to build. I also wonder why they chose to build the sculpture out of sugar and not something else.

  • bladenw
    5/19/2014 - 11:49 a.m.

    thats really cool that they made that i wonder how long it took them to make that it would take like months and months to build but what if they fly away or people start tearing it apart.

  • Erin5656
    5/19/2014 - 12:53 p.m.

    Thats really cool how they made that whole thing out of refined sugar, it must have taken a long time to make it. I wonder if it fell down alot when they were making it, like trial and error.

  • SD1dancer
    5/19/2014 - 12:57 p.m.

    That is a really cool sculpture, on the other hand are they going to keep in the warehouse and if not how are they going to move it? It seems it took alot of hard-work and dedication to build.

  • 21deitra
    5/19/2014 - 01:05 p.m.

    Mmmmmmmmmmm, looks yummy! The only problem is that when I would try to eat it , it would take so long that it would go bad before I could eat a quarter of it. It could probably feed six families. : ]

  • abbycasebeer
    5/19/2014 - 02:07 p.m.

    Wow! That is a lot of sugar, why did they make the butt so big? Anyway, that is totally awesome!! I have one more question, is the sculpture wearing clothes?

  • Jordon07
    5/19/2014 - 02:12 p.m.

    Is this edible? I think that whoever made this had so much heart and determination with the passion to build a 4 ton (8,000 pounds) 35 foot sculpture. This is awesome!

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