Name: SOCRATIC WAY   200 LBS.     Placement:   

               Location: Oregon State University

Curator: dedicated by the University president, Ed Ray

Learn more about this Sculpture


Shown In the above photo in 2014, from L to R are the San the artist, Kay Krapf, San’s cousin Ted Flory and President Ed Ray of Oregon State University (July 2003 to June 2020).

San presented a 150 lb. sculpture from the Project 911UP series she named ‘Socratic Way’ to Oregon State University. Socratic Way’s name came about for the Socratic method of questioning developed and practiced by the Greek philosopher, Socrates. It is a type of dialogue between students and teachers, by the continual probing questions of the teacher. This was done in a concerted effort to explore the many beliefs that can shape the students’ opinions and views. This fosters critical thinking for both. 

It all began with San had been speaking with her cousin Ted Flory, who was an employee at the university. Ted was very interested in the line of Project 911UP sculptures she had been working on and started talking about how she could create a sculpture for campus. After a couple visits to the university first to get a feel for the campus and where the sculpture could be placed, San and Ted collaborated with Sid Cooper, another employee there.  All three of them worked together to choose a spot where Socratic Way could be displayed.  After a few discussions, it was decided The Memorial Union building on campus would be the chosen setting.  The Memorial Union building is the student’s activity center.  There is a ballroom, bowling alley, study areas, cafeteria, and shops on the inside.  It is this location that would get the most exposure to students, faculty, and guests of the university.  It was designed by architect Lee Arden Thomas, who was an OSU alumnus.  Construction started in 1926 and was finished in 1928. The idea to build the Memorial Union came from two students at the time named Tony Schille and Warren Daigh.  They wanted the building to be in commemoration of fellow soldiers who had been killed in WW1.   The construction of the Memorial Union was funded by past and present students’ contributions.  This building is considered one of the finest Neoclassic examples of architecture in the entire state of Oregon.  It is simply known now by many as simply the MU. 

Once the MU was chosen as the resting place for Socratic Way, a glass enclosure was designed by several art students from the university’s graduate program. It included a large New York City silhouette imposed onto enlarged photos of the actual concrete and stone sculpture, giving a dramatic effect to the viewer.  Socratic Way was then set upon a pedestal in the foreground.

After many years being displayed in this setting, the sculpture has been moved just down the hall to a busier area.  It sits on an elevated new platform, encased in glass, and is close to where many hundreds of students walk by each day.  Being in a highly trafficked area, is the perfect place for this sculpture to now reside.  There is an informational sign hung on the wall behind the Socratic Way that describes the project and where the sculpture came from.  We here at Project 911UP, are quite moved by this location, being amongst the hustle and bustle of everyday campus life, it remains a moving place to stop and reflect on that day of September 11, 2001.  It is a reminder of that time for many young students nowadays, were not  even born yet when this occurred.  

Oregon State University is a public land grant university based in Corvalis, Oregon.  OSU offers more than 200 undergraduate degree programs along with a variety of graduate and doctoral degrees through each college.  It has the seventh-largest engineering college in the nation for 2023.

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Enjoy these exclusive behind-the-scenes photos and moments captured involving this memorial sculpture


Special Events, News Articles, Behind-The-Scenes Stories of Creation, Installation, and more

The article provides a brief overview of Sandra Priest, an American artist known for her sculptures and public art installations. It highlights her involvement in various projects, including the creation of memorials dedicated to the victims of 9/11. The article mentions her collaboration with New......

As the 20th anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, approaches, our collective memory turns to the heroes and the indomitable spirit displayed during that dark day in American history. One remarkable project, Project 911up, led by the talented artist Sandra Priest, is......

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