ART: Roc and Seek 

A public art scavenger hunt

I'd like to play a game, Rochester. And since the weather's been lovely (knock on ALL the wood), let's take this game outdoors. I propose a challenge: a scavenger hunt of public artworks found in and around Rochester. Use the following clues to locate 9 works that might otherwise have missed your attention, whether due to the age of the art, or because of our tendency to walk the same paths again and again and miss things that are often right under our noses.

The clues are listed in no particular order, and some will be more readily recognizable than others. Use the associated photos to help you on your journey. The hunt will last for one month (through noon on July 19) or until the first person correctly identifies all of the works (descriptions are fine) and the location where each can be found. We will award a special prize to the winner, and a second special prize to the most creative photo or video essay submitted as a response before July 19.

Entries and questions can be sent to [email protected]. Thank you, and happy hunting!


1. Sculpture: I represent an important American who found both freedom and a home in Rochester, where he published a guiding light of a paper. He is buried in a high place called Hope. I am the first monument to an African-American in the nation, and once greeted visitors to Rochester as they stepped off the train at the station that Bragdon built. When that beautiful train terminal was replaced with the current blasé building, I was moved to my current spot, where I overlook the crowds who witness the works of The Bard in the summertime.

2. Sculpture: To find me, you'll have to travel north along the Genesee to the place of "lower" falling. I was created by a sculptor who taught at the Rochester School for the Deaf, and you can see this expressive influence in my hundreds of faces and hands. About a dozen years old, I'm young for a monolithic grouping, but I remain a perfect place for quiet reflection along the water's edge, tucked behind a house of recreation.

3. Sculpture: My feminine form glides down a narrow patch of rough brick on a shady, peaceful street that seldom sees much traffic. I am but a slender secret shadow slithering vertically, near the tower where some students of sound dwell. My maker's name sounds like "bear" in another tongue, another name for the dippers in the night sky.

4. Sculpture: We are but five in number, and resemble the gnarled, wraith-like forms of a scorched grove, like the twisted remaining relics of a proud patch of arbor. Through the four seasons we stand unchanged, ever-metal, never green, always straining upward toward a sun that cannot nourish us. Find us between a holy house and a sea of lots for parking.

5. Graffiti: Leave the city to locate my decades-old message, boldly scrawled on a low bridge above a dip in the drive. Amid rusted rivets galore: two white words, seven letters and a symbol. This sparse and to-the-point plea is a relic of another painful age that I belonged to, essentially saying, "I don't want to kill, I don't want to die."

6. Sculpture: Of all the beautiful architecture found in this place of hills, trees, and graves, we two figures stand in memory of the men and the youths wasted when the warring countrymen sought to split or hold fast. Long after rumors of glory are spread and disperse, long after the pain of death and bloody memory fade, only bones, ashes, and dust remain beneath our feet.

7. Sculpture: Grab a coffee and pass weary students weighed down with instruments of sound to find the corner where we twirl, larger than life. Though we vary just enough as individuals, the twin twist of our vaguely figurative forms follows how perfectly our movements mirrored one another. We make dancing in sync seem like a cinch!

8. Relief sculpture: We are two threshold guardians, male and female workers seeming to bear the weight of what was once the Labor Lyceum on a street named for an apostle-turned-saint. We ourselves are guarded by Liberty above, who raises her torch as a guiding light for all who seek justice and the freedom to live well and work well.

9. Sculpture: I am a lovely, low guard rail designed by the man of steel, a decorative design spanning the downtown river. You'll spot me along the main thoroughfare. I was commissioned by a maker of lenses, with the aim of enhancing the sights of the city.

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