Fairfield University students, professor to videotape fabrication of 45-foot-high glass art at Swiss Bank


SBC Warburg, a division of the Swiss Bank Corporation, has awarded $25,000 to Fairfield University to underwrite a student-produced video about the Cone, a 45-foot high all-glass structure that will be installed at its new corporate complex in Stamford, Conn.

Internationally renowned artist Brian Clarke was commissioned to create the free-standing stained glass structure for placement near Interstate 95 and the Stamford Transportation Center. His works include skylights in Brazil, new windows for a 14th century abbey in Switzerland, stage sets for Paul McCartney's world tours and the world headquarters of Pfizer, Inc. in New York City, as well as the stained glass at the New Synagogue in Darmstadt, Germany, and the glass tower created for Espana Telefonica, Barcelona, for the 1992 Olympiad.

The grant to Fairfield University will enable Steven Minnick, a 1994 graduate now studying for a master's at the university, and John Stys, who graduated last month, to work under the direction of the Rev. James Mayzik, S.J., assistant professor of visual and performing arts, and videotape the fabrication of the Cone in order to produce a 30-minute program. Several more video and film students are expected to join the project in the fall.

They will travel to Europe for two weeks to follow the progress of the project which is being designed in England and fabricated in Munich, Germany. They will also tape the demolition of an office building in Stamford as the site is readied for the Cone.

The stained glass will be shipped to Stamford in panels and assembled at the site in the fall. The Cone, with a 20-foot diameter base, can be entered via a bridge constructed over an area tightly packed with flowers. Describing his project, Clarke said persons entering the Cone will feel as if "they are in the center of a sapphire."

The students videotaping the project have worked with Father Mayzik at the University's Ham Channel, student-operated television programming that is seen on campus through a closed-circuit TV network. Steve Minnick, of Montville, N.J., is a 1994 graduate of Fairfield who majored in communications. He has since worked for MSNBC, NFL films and for independent producers and is now a graduate student at Fairfield in the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions. John Stys of Hanover, N.H., recently graduated with a double major in communications and nursing. He was formerly executive producer of HAM Channel programs.

Father Mayzik came to Fairfield University in 1992 and conducts film and communications courses. He co-produced an HBO film "Crossing the River" about a young man's search for self-discovery, and filmed a documentary about St. Ignatius Loyola, founder of the Jesuits, entitled "To See His Face" that was shown in several New York movie theaters. He also was executive producer for "Vatican II," a six-part video documentary. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1976, was ordained as a priest in 1985 and earned a bachelor of arts degree from Georgetown University, a master of arts from Weston School of Theology and a master of fine arts in film from the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on June 1, 1997