Wolsey Johnson’s Handful consists of six large arching beams of steel. Handful is about twenty-six feet high and stands directly on three points of contact with the ground with no pedestal. The lower part is made of three long curved downward turning quarter segments of arcs while its upper section is three upward turning arcs. Each element has only two points of welded contact with with any other element. The effect is of a delicate drawing made with lines of steel. The sensation is of upward motion and lightness of weight in defiance of its heavy industrial materials. Johnson wanted to create an abstract composition with the monumentality of traditional representational monuments.
Johnson graduated from Trinity College and made a gift of this sculpture to his alma mater. It originally stood in the center of the Mather (now Gates) Quadrangle and was later moved to the plaza next to the High Rise Dormitory.
Trinity College, High Rise Dormitory, Vernon Street
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- Trinity Tripod article : "Johnson's Sculpture Stands Completed," p. 8