Stickwork structure at Saint John’s to remain for another summer

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March 2, 2015

Media Coverage: WCCO-TV | St. Cloud Times | WJON-AM | CBS Sunday Morning

After careful examination of the Stickwork structure at Saint John's and the fact that there is such high public demand to visit it, the College of Saint Benedict/Saint John's University Art Department in conjunction with Saint John's Life Safety, the Saint John's fire chief and Saint John's Abbey have decided to let it stand for another summer season.   

As an all-natural structure, Stickwork - named "Lean on Me" - is in the process of decay since it was built. While most of these wood art pieces by Pat Dougherty are predicted to last 2+ years, one small advantage of our cold winters is that there is no decay during the frozen months which considerably extends the life span compared to milder parts of the country. The "woven basket" nature of the artwork also means that it is not susceptible to sudden failure. Saint John's will continue to monitor the structure on a regular basis.  

In the meantime, we have postponed our plans to bring Stickwork to its end until sometime in the more distant future. We are now looking at late fall of 2015. We estimate that over 50,000 people have visited Stickwork and many more have enjoyed it from the roadside.

Stickwork is open for viewing to the public. It is visible from the entrance road (County Road 159) to Saint John's just off of I-94 and sits on lands of Saint John's Abbey Arboretum.