News-Sun photo by CHRISTOPHER TUFFLEY It is the biggest signature he has attached to a work of art, mural designer James R. Hahn said. It's roughly a yard long. Close to half a million tiles were used to create the work of art.
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published: Wednesday, March 06, 2013
James R. Hahn's mosaic tribute to Sebring racing is worth a drive
By CHRISTOPHER TUFFLEY
SEBRING -- The first step is easy math. Take a wall 312 feet long and 10 feet high. Mulitiply one number by the other to determine the wall's surface -- 3,120 square feet.
The second step, changing the square feet into square inches, is just a tad bit more difficult.
There are 144 square inches in every square foot. Multiply the total number of square feet by 144 square inches and discover the wall's surface equals 449,280 square inches.
There is only one reason this math lesson is in any way news worthy. The wall is not abstract, but real, and covered with tiles -- each tile, one inch square.
For almost two months now, skilled craftsmen, some from overseas, have been laying those tiles, in the process creating a work of art.
The project is under the direction of world renowned artist and Sebring resident James R. Hahn.
This is not the first mural Hahn created in Sebring. He designed and painted the Sebring Centennial Mural on Ridgewood Drive, near his new gallery.
The race themed mosaic is on Haywood Taylor Boulevard, diagonally opposite the raceway's Hairpin Turn. The main work is complete; the outcome unique.
"It's a homage to the 12 Hours of Sebring," Hahn said. "Wild, bizarro and big."
Two checkered flags frame the center, which is divided into two 80-foot wide panels - one showing the race during the day; the other at night.
The logo of Trend Stone, the company that envisioned a mural and commissioned Hahn to create it, divides the two racing panels.
Trend Stone is an Italian-based company making and selling granite composite, glass and mosaic countertops all over the world. According to the company's website, its products are made in Italy, India and right here in Sebring.
E-Stone, Trend Stone's local factory, is right next to the wall.
"They gave me free artistic license," Hahn said, adding the project was one of his most challenging. He even traveled to Italy to see the glass mosaic tiles made.
Hahn came up with the overall design, which went through computerized pixilation and tessellation (creating a pattern or picture with tiles laid out with no gaps or spaces).
"It was like a big jigsaw puzzle, a huge collaboration," Hahn said. "Huge, huge, huge. A minimum of 50 people worked on this before we were done."
He grinned while saying the work was completed in a fraction of the time expected, and will be ready in time for the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Part of the reason Hahn creates outdoor art is to wake people up, he said. "So many are blind to what they have. I like to give them fresh eyes."
He hopes his art work gets people to sit up and notice. He hopes they say things like, "Oh my gosh, where did that come from?"
A must see! (by: Blindman - 3/7/2013)
Wow! This is amazing... a must see!
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