The Monstrous Bonze Doors of the Plummer Building of the Mayo Medical Complex in Rochester, MN.
Each door weighs 4000 lb, stands 16 ft high, and is 5Ā½ in thick. The doors consist of forty-two 18 Ć 21-in panels. Six repeating symbolic panels and 2 repeating ornamental patterns are interspersed throughout each door. The symbolic panels show a woman kneeling next to her child to represent maternity and the home, aĀ figureĀ holding an overflowing cornucopia and a shock of wheat to represent agriculture, aĀ figureĀ with a paint palette and brushes to represent the fine arts, aĀ figureĀ with a lamp and scroll to represent education, and aĀ figurewith a hook and crane to represent the mechanical arts. The ornamental panels have a central button surrounded by floral patterns and smaller etchings of flora and fauna (eg, squirrels, pinecones) indigenous to Minnesota. The central buttons depict either a turkey or the face of a Native American.
The intent of the original designers was that these doors would be closed at the end of each clinic business day. However, the closing of the doors has instead become a memorial to important historical events or a tribute to the memory of a famous or influential person. Some events that have received this honor include the deaths of Drs William J. and Charles H. Mayo (1939), the assassination of President John F. Kennedy (1963), and most recently, in commemoration of the victims of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.
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