Gene and Sue Flores - Huron River at Broadway
Gene Flores, American b.1935
Sue Flores, American b. 1940
Huron River at Broadway, 2008
Rusted steel, 60 x 348 inches

Gift of Gail and James Young (MBA'55)

Gene Flores grew up in San Bernadino, California. One of his first studios was in the Tehachapi Mountains, overlooking the Mojave desert, from which he drew inspiration. Flores has been working with steel since 1957 and now lives in the Berkshire Mountains of Western Massachusetts. His projects include kinetic sculptures and public installations. Gene’s wife Susan Marya Flores is an artist and furniture maker who joins her husband on large projects. She designs and produces contemporary furniture mostly constructed out of metal, occasionally incorporating upholstery, stone, glass, and turned wood in her designs.

After visiting Ann Arbor and researching historical and topographical maps of the city and the history of the University, the concept and design for the landscape wall sculpture Huron River at Broadway was created by Flores and his wife, Sue. To create the rusted effect on the steel, Flores leaves the steel slab outdoors for several weeks or months until the desired level of oxidation is reached; the differences in acid rain depending on location or season lends a different patina to each individual piece.

"The Huron River is central to the city of Ann Arbor and to the University of Michigan, the campus lying on both sides of the river. Broadway Street, in the heart of Ann Arbor, is shown crossing the river in the earliest maps. The river is dramatic - the view from above is expansive, the canyon unexpected - and it provides natural recreation, along with spots for exploration and privacy. The Stephen M. Ross School of Business sits on land settled at the beginning of Ann Arbor's incorporation. The sculpture is intended as an abstraction and synthesis of the physical attributes and history of the river, and as a potential repository of traditions, memories, and personal experiences."