Evolution Art Studio is owned and operated by Jay Elias, a former United States Marine who served during the Gulf War. Jay’s passion is to make art accessible to everyone. Jay reached out to Hoosier Pattern for a project involving a manhole cover that was to be part of the renovation at the 17th District Court in Redford Township, Michigan. The new manhole cover will be front and center of the walkway entrance to the court.
The design was simple: to include the state seal of Michigan and the name of the court. The only other requirement was that it says “sanitary.” The state seal of Michigan features the state coat of arms. The moose and elk represent Michigan (they are both natives of the state), the bald eagle is a symbol for the United States. The Latin phrases on the seal are:
- “Si Quaeris Peninsulam Amoenam Circumspice” is Michigan’s state motto meaning “if you seek pleasant peninsula, look about you.”
- “E Plurbus Unum” means “From Many, One” or “One From Many” meaning our nation is made from many states
- “Tuebor” means “I Will Defend” and refers to the frontier position of Michigan
Hoosier Pattern printed a set of 3D molds that came together to create this manhole cover. Once completed, the items were shipped to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where the final product was poured.
When asked if there was any significant history behind this project, Jay explained:
“Not so much history behind this project as there is a lot of irony (pun intended). I am a disabled veteran who returned from overseas deployment just after the end of the first Gulf War in 1991. Unaware that I was suffering terribly from PTSD, I wound up getting into trouble with the law and serving many years in prison for something that may have been avoided with intervention.
This manhole cover is being installed at a courthouse where they now have “veteran’s court,” something that wasn’t available when I went through the system. There’s so much more awareness about PTSD and the importance of mental health these days. This manhole cover is very symbolic of the healing that can take place through the artistic and creative process. I’m living proof. “
Jay also believes that when it comes to 3D sand printing and the art industry, this process opens up a new world of possibilities for artists and designers. Prototyping is a snap, and one-off projects with difficult parameters can quickly be completed.
Evolution Art Studio offers metal casting to veterans for free through an art therapy program. The studio is always looking to provide workshops for veterans. If you are interested, please contact Jay Elias at Evolution Art Studio. Follow them on Facebook or Instagram.