Indelible (2003)

by Alison Sky (1946 - )

Photo Caption: Photo Alec Rogers © 2016 for the Association for Public Art
  • Title

    Indelible

  • Artist

    Alison Sky (1946 - )

  • Year

    2003

  • Location

    Independence Visitor Center, south side exterior, 6th and Market Streets

  • Medium

    Stucco and glass

  • Themes

    Women and Public Art, Political Public Art

Commissioned by the City of Philadelphia, Percent for Art Program

Owned by the City of Philadelphia

At A Glance

  • A site-specific, narrative work installed on the exterior of the Independence Visitor’s Center

  • The glass panels include quotes from the Declaration of Independence, as well as text about the condemnation of slavery that was omitted from the original draft

  • The text about slavery appears blurry, as if erased, but is revealed as the viewer moves

  • Intended to create awareness about American history that has gone undisclosed

Installed on the south side exterior of Philadelphia’s Independence Visitor’s Center, Alison Sky’s Indelible is a site-specific, narrative work intended to create awareness about American history that has gone undisclosed. The artwork is a stucco relief of a townhouse facade, overlaid with glass that contains text about the condemnation of slavery that was edited out of the original draft of the Declaration of Independence by Congress in 1774.

Indelible’s facade is comprised of three glass panels with identifiable quotes from the Declaration of Independence. Within the glass panels are “windows” with the omitted text about slavery set into the glass. At first this “erased” text appears to be blurry and illegible but is restored as a hidden message when the viewer stands directly in front of the window. According to Sky, the piece “grows out of, and commemorates the significance of this site to the history of our nation. It reestablishes the historic context of residential buildings and restores the condemnation of slavery that was part of the original draft of the Declaration of Independence.”

Indelible
Photo Alec Rogers © 2016 for the Association for Public Art

 

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