San Jose Public Art: ‘Oionos’ by Douglas Hollis (hint: it’s not a satellite dish)


Downtown San Jose is an increasingly beautiful place to stroll. Tree-lined streets, parks, and cafes all can help brighten any day. Another great thing: wonderful public works of art. A variety of sculptures and pieces are on display throughout downtown, each with an interesting story or two. If you’ve been to the San Jose Repertory Theatre, then by chance you’ll recognize this work by artist Douglas Hollis. I hope I’m not the first to confuse it for a satellite dish.

Called Oionos, the work was completed in 1997. Once again there is more here than meets the eye.

Doub Hollis Oionos, Downtown San Jose

Depending on the time of day and amount of sun, you may even see a quote from William Shakespeare’s The Tempest projected onto the plaza paving. What does it say? You’ll have to investigate to find out first hand! If you do, be sure to email me your photo of the quotation and I’ll include it here for the record, and all to see.

Doub Hollis Oionos, next to San Jose Repertory Theatre

The steel quill you see pictured here is actually wind activated and can extend up to 28 feet long. No word yet, if that will enable the Rep to receive broadcasts from The Bolshoi Theatre, but I wouldn’t bet against it. Although maybe it’s true and it really does help write on the sky. From Douglas Hollis’ web site, “The work celebrates the tools humans have invented (dance, language, and writing) to convey knowledge of time and space.”

Doub Hollis Oionos, Can you hear me now?

Explore. Create. Live. Follow Stark Insider on Twitter and Facebook. Join our 9,000 subscribers who read SI on tablets and smartphones on Google Newsstand. Prefer video? Subscribe to 
Stark Insider on YouTube, the largest arts & travel channel in San Francisco.