Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition
Twentieth Anniversary Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition
Oriental by Guy Bellaver


Painted steel (hand-made I-beams with concrete "dry garden" base)

12' x 7' x 4'8"

Guy Bellaver
St. Charles, IL

24th Rosen Outdoor Sculpture Competition & Exhibition (2010-2011)

Part of the Downtown Boone Development Association (DBDA) Public Art Program

Image at left shows work at previous location.

Artist's Comments

Oriental is inspired by the art of calligraphy. The brush strokes and their fluid movements are inherently beautiful – and this movement and flow, although only two dimensional, were the inspiration for creating the sculpture. The material used to convey the idea is steel. It is presented in an industrial shape called an I-beam. The I-beams used in this piece are hand-made, three-piece steel structures made up of a web with two sides welded perpendicular to the web. This steel configuration gives the sculpture structural strength while allowing the artist to shape it into the flowing sections of the sculpture.

The flowing sculpture emerges from a base made up of a sand and cement mixture (which mimics the Japanese art of “karesansui”.). The mixture is deposited at the base of the sculpture while in a pliable state and then raked by the artist. The impression made by the rakes’ teeth remains once the mixture hardens. These impressions give the finished sculpture and it’s siting a complete interpretation.

About “Karesansui”
In Japanese karesansui means dry landscape. Because of its features it looks much more like a painting than a garden. In fact, whereas the Western garden is conceived as an exploitable open space to walk in, grow plants, enjoy relaxing moments, the karesansui is a meditation garden.

You observe and admire it from outside its borders, usually only from one perspective, emptying your mind and at the same time gathering the feelings the arrangement conveys. While in a normal garden there are many distracting elements (plant varieties with different shapes and colors, falling leaves, windblown branches, animals…), before a karesansui you can reach peace because you’re surveying a complete stillness.

Karesansui gardens reproduce natural landscapes in a more abstract way by using stones, gravel, sand and sometimes a few patches of moss for representing mountains, islands, boats, seas and rivers. Karesansui gardens are strongly influenced by Zen Buddhism and used for meditation.

The aesthetic consonance with abstract art largely accounts for the resurgence of karesansui gardens both in Japan and abroad in the 20th century.
Guy Bellaver

About the Artist

Mr. Bellaver is a sculptor whose works span many mediums, including stone, wood, painted steel, and bronze. His monumental works include The Kane County Veterans Memorial, Geneva, IL; Ēkwabet (Potawatomi Indian – found in the Art Inventories Catalog of the Smithsonian American Art Museum), St. Charles, IL; The Crucifixion of Christ (both bronze and wood), St. Patrick’s Church, St. Charles, IL; The Growth of Post Modern, MCC Technology, St. Charles, IL; Limestone in the Wind/Pittsburgh, Latrobe, PA; and Jesus Christ/The Resurrection, The Daughters of St. Paul, Boston, MA.

Mr. Bellaver’s sculptures also appear in the corporate, university, and civic collections of the Forest County Potawatomi Cultural Museum, Crandon, WI, Armstrong County, Kittanning, PA, Elgin Community College, Elgin, IL, Forbes Health System, Pittsburgh, PA, Graphite Sales, Inc., Chagrin Falls, OH, H.J. Heinz Corporation’s International Headquarters, Pittsburgh, PA, Hiram College, Hiram, OH, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, PA, Property Investment Company, Indianapolis, IN, and St. Vincent College, Latrobe, PA, among others. His work also appears in private collections around the country. Avera McKennan Hospital and the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science in Sioux Falls, South Dakota are leasing his work, and he is also a finalist in a competition to create a monumental “icon sculpture” for Avera McKennan’s Hospital Campus. Mr. Bellaver is currently represented by Bridges – a Gallery of Fine Art (St. Charles, IL).

After his discharge from the United States Army, Mr. Bellaver earned a B.A. in Economics from St. Vincent College. He has been employed as a sales representative by Prudential Insurance and Xerox. He has worked as a sculptor full time since 1976. Mr. Bellaver has taken masters credit classes in art at Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Pittsburgh, and Northern Illinois University, as well as The School of the Museum of Art in Chicago. He is presently a member of the Dupage Art League and the Fox Valley Arts Council and sits on the Boards of the St. Charles Visitors and Cultural Commission and the St. Charles Rotary Club and Foundation. Mr. Bellaver is a past President of the St. Charles Rotary Club and a past Chairman of the Downtown St. Charles Partnership’s Public Art Committee.