The Gate that Eats Time

Artscape, Baltimore, Md. 2013

The lintels and vertical elements are carved of tulip poplar, the buttress arms and struts are white oak while the finials are eastern red cedar. Overall dimensions are 15 feet tall by 17 feet from outside finial to outside finial with a depth of 15 feet, while the opening measures 5.5 feet wide and 7.5 feet tall. 

During Artscape the Baltimore Rock Opera Society (B.R.O.S.)had a great time parading through the venue. 

The Gate that Eats Time would be great at another event or installed for the entrance for a restaurant, or garden element. Price Negotiable. 

Each eye is shaped like the Maya drew eyes but with the pupils being Mayan glyphs. The one that resembles a curved ladder imposed over a disc means mirror or light. The other, to me looks like a square landscape drawing of hills with clouds in the corners. It means darkness.  

Each finial that anchors the buttresses is carved in the shape of an ear of corn; the basis for the American diet, now and as in the time before Columbus. 

Jim Lucio came up with the provocation of an international street of blended cultures, both now and across time. The Gate that Eats Time is a mixture of Chinese, Mayan, Japanese and Italian influences. 

Using an open mouth of a giant head as a passage is from Bomarzo's Sacred Grove at the Villa Orsini. It dates from the early renaissance. 


This project was built for Artscape 2013 in Baltimore. Its based on the structure of the Japanese Torii gate frequently found in at the entrance to sanctuaries and villages. Instead of a sleek minimal structure the entire form is carved and shaped as a giant head with an open mouth has the passage. The teeth are individual character heads that appear to follow those who cross through the maw. 

Open mouthed dragons form the ends of the top lintel. Suspended from those serpents are the eyes of the major figure head.