Through his work, artist Ryder Richards often examines what he describes as “the pressures and resultant response of the individual within a dominant (often violent) culture.” This scrutiny has led to Richards’ Resilience and Remembrance, his new public artwork for El Centro College in downtown Dallas, which was unveiled last Wednesday.
The installation is comprised of eight lights atop the canopied entrance to El Centro, and a strip of blue light down the middle of the walkway. It was here that on July 7, 2016, five police officers were killed in the line of duty. The installation honors both those officers and their wounded colleagues.
After working on the piece for the past two years, Richard writes of Resilience: “Besides the obvious light memorial aspect, I wanted the piece to function as a way-finding path to a safe space, so that it could serve a practical function in addition to its symbolic role.”
El Centro’s statement reads, in part: “The tragic events of July 7, 2016 changed our community forever. To commemorate the memory of the fallen officers, the resilience of Downtown Dallas, and the El Centro College family, these lights will remain bright. The blue line will continue to offer a path to sanctuary for those in need and remain a testament to the ideals of dedication, courage, empathy, sympathy, and honor.”
Read more about and by Richards here, here, and here. For the past few years the artist has split his time between Roswell, NM, Lubbock, TX, Wassaic, NY, and most recently, Fukuoka, Japan. Resilience and Remembrance can be viewed at the north entrance of El Centro, on Elm Street in Dallas.