A 10-foot bronze sculpture in front of the historic women's gym on UT campus

Landmarks Sculpture Recognized by Award as Tribute to Black Womanhood, Labor

  • Nov 10, 2022

Public art program Landmarks received a CODAaward for its acquisition, "Sentinel IV," created by internationally recognized artist Simone Leigh. The piece is located in the central courtyard of the Anna Hiss Gymnasium, the historic women’s gym at The University of Texas at Austin.  

CODAawards celebrate projects that successfully integrate commissioned art into interior, architectural or public spaces. "Sentinel IV" was selected as a merit winner for this year’s awards out of 406 entries from 27 countries. 

The 10-foot bronze sculpture is modeled after a Zulu ceremonial wedding spoon, a utensil that conveys status among the Zulu people and symbolizes women’s labor. The sculpture also is inspired by the archetype of a sentinel, a guard who stands watch and protects people.  

This year, Leigh is representing the United States at the 2022 Venice Biennale, where her pavilion, entitled Sovereignty, includes an enlarged variation of Sentinel IV. Leigh won the Golden Lion, the highest honor at the Biennale, for her exhibition.  

Leigh’s work spans sculpture, video, installation, and performance art, taking inspiration from various visual and figurative traditions across the African diaspora. In doing so, she chooses not to render a single individual, but rather the collective power of Black womanhood.  

Read more on the Landmarks website.