Marc Moulton: Sculpting His Path to Success
(as seen in the 2013 edition of Ascension, Georgia Southern’s annual research publication)
Sculpture Professor Marc Moulton had no idea he would become an artist when he first enrolled in college, but after acquiring numerous awards, an impressive submission record and public approbation of his quality productions, Moulton now admits he could not have imagined a better career.
The recipient of Georgia Southern University’s 2012 Award of Excellence in Research and/or Creative Scholarly Activity says while growing up in Utah, no one in his household ever discussed art or showed any interest in the subject. In fact, if not for a work-study position in Weber State University’s Art Department and a subsequent art class, he may never have found his true career path – creating large-scale sculptures and teaching at the university level.
“My choice of art happened along the way over a long period,” Moulton said. “I felt comfortable in the art classroom and my professors told me I was good at what I was doing. Of course, nobody knows what is going to happen to him or her but I certainly was propelled to follow some path; I just didn’t know which road I would take.”
Having discovered his path, the artist found he preferred the versatility of fabricating his outdoor art from metals like stainless steel, which he says require virtually no maintenance, can withstand nature’s elements of wind, ice, snow and rain, does not rust and cannot be easily vandalized, bent or scraped.
Moulton’s public art projects include works for corporations, schools and municipalities in several states. University patron Betty Foy Sanders chose his sculpture “Ascend” as the signature piece for the Center for Art and Theatre at Georgia Southern. His most recent work titled “Kernel” was installed at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Ga. in 2011.
Currently the professor teaches a full load of classes at Georgia Southern, and is negotiating a contract with the city of Suwanee, Ga. to install a permanent display of the city’s 1,600 pound steel artifact from a World Trade Center Tower destroyed in the 9/11 attacks. His display would include a timeline of events as they unfolded on September 11, 2001, and at night, it would light up to project a dramatic image he described as the “ghost of lower Manhattan to show how the area used to look.” He added, “Once people know where that piece of scrap metal originated, it becomes a powerful thing.”
While Moulton’s work is influenced by the landscape of the mountains of Utah where he grew up, when he transforms a public space into something inspiring and uplifting, he says his body of work showcases other themes. “There is a personality to it. My character and my personality are rendered in each one because I am going to create what I know how to do and what I think I do well.” He explained, “I use lighting a lot in my work because it is dramatic and can establish a mood. It is the opportunity to see this sculpture as Mother Nature changes around it and the lighting will give you a different perspective or a different point of view.”
As Moulton sees it, public art is the opportunity to create or provide a more engaging, a more intelligent and enjoyable life and he asks, “Who doesn’t like that, who doesn’t like passion?”