Mastrangelo’s “Con Ed” and “Orlando” in Touchable Sculpture Exhibit at the Polasek Museum Now through April 17, 2015.


“Sight Unseen: Touchable Sculpture” Tuesday, December 7, 2015 – Sunday, April 17, 2016 at The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens in Winter Park Florida.

DO TOUCH the ART. The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens presents its new exhibition, “Sight Unseen: Touchable Sculpture,” running December 8, 2015 – April 17, 2016.

The museum encourages visitors to touch the art and experience the exhibit through its innovative sensory station—complete with blindfolds, a tactical way-finding system, and braille labels. Designed with the assistance of the VSA of Florida: The State Organization on Arts and Disability, the exhibit makes art universally accessible.

“Sight Unseen” presents 40 of the most innovative and exciting modern sculptors in an exhibit that demands a heightened sensory awareness. With an exhibit this immersive, visitors will forget what they know about museums and come to their senses.

Check out some of  the fascinating sculptures on FaceBook:

City of Orlando

Here is a detail of my wall entry “City of Orlando:”

“Con Edison Concert” is an interactive sculpture which I created just for this exhibition. Here it is in the Museum setting:

Con Edison Concert
Con Edison Concert

A paper casting of a partial Con Edison Manhole Cover had been in my studios for several decades just waiting for its entry into the Art World. It would be called: “Con Edison Concert,” based on city street noises. The Polasek Museum’s call for Touchable Sculpture motivated me to develop the work. "Con Edison Concert" (top)

 “Con Edison Concert” (top)

As a former Elementary School Teacher and later a Title One Tutor, I knew the appeal of  hands on experiences to “Kids of all Ages.” The New York Metropolitan Area abounds in Con Ed Covers, an immediate symbol of omnipresent electricity. The focus of “Con Edison Concert” became the Appreciation of Electricity through the fun experience of touching the buttons, hearing, and feeling the various components incorporated along the sides. These include: a musical doorbell, an LED light, switches, an outlet and three play back recordings of electricity trivia.  It was a real challenge to reinforce the elements set into a foam base,  so they could not be pushed through the back.

"Who is Known for Lighting Up Our World?"
“Who is Known for Lighting Up Our World?”

Side One has an LED light to press on and off.  Push the button on the right for my question… “Who is known for lighting up our world?”

Side Two pictured in the museum setting above, has a silent switch to press.  Nothing happens, but the switch is a reminder of the luxury of turning on electric power. Press the button on the right for a Terry Roderick’s quote related to Con Edison’s 95,000 miles of underground cables.

On the side with the noisy switch and outlet: Press the button to hear four seconds of a furious hurricane.  Al Mastrangelo says: “Hurricanes Cause Power Outages!”

One has to have the patience of a saint to be married to a “Manhole Artist!” So while I worked on this project, I called my husband: “Saint Alfred.” He helped me select and order the various side components. Al’s brilliant suggestion was to incorporate my antique stone texture instead of a stucco finish.

Blog Viewers, if you are able to attend this fascinating exhibition, I hope you have as much fun experiencing “Con Edison Concert” as I did in creating it. Please share your comments on this blog.

“Sight Unseen: Touchable Sculpture”

Tues., Dec. 7, 2015 – Sunday: April 17, 2016  

Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens:

633 Osceola Avenue,

Winter Park FL 32789

Open Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

 Sunday 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Admission fees  adults (18-59) $5

Seniors (60+) $4

Students (age 12 through college) $3;

 Members and children age 12 and under free.

For more information: call 407-647-6294

Visit the website at



12 replies on “Mastrangelo’s “Con Ed” and “Orlando” in Touchable Sculpture Exhibit at the Polasek Museum Now through April 17, 2015.”

Dear Rachel Frisby
I would like to submit my two manhole cover sculptures for your exhibition: “Sight Unseen: Touchable Sculpture.” One is “City of Orlando,” a sculpture relief work 48″ x 31″ x 3.”

I would also like to create an interactive sculpture called “Con Edison Concert.”

A partial Con Edison Electric paper casting will be the top. The sides would have openings to compartments containing switches and buttons to activate various electrical devices: door bell, light switch etc. It would be battery operated.

I will call you for your opinion or suggestions for this project and I plan to go through the submission process.
Thank you for your time and attention.

Bobbi Mastrangelo

Dear Bobbi,
I’m very intrigued by your interactive concept especially.
I like how you’ve taken the theme to heart and designed an “experience.”
Please submit pictures of that completed “Con Edison Piece” for full consideration once you have it finished. I know you said you are beginning work on it now. The deadline officially is October 30th for entry.
Rachel Frisby
Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens

These are wonderful Bobbi!! Thanks for sharing, you really found a niche! Love seeing your creative process. Please include a brief description of your process in your final submission.
You really manage to fool the eye with the attention to texture, so it would be helpful to include all the steps in your label info. At first glance, for example, I thought the covers were simply cast. You put much more work and artistry into these pieces. Very interesting!
Rachel Frisby
Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens
633 Osceola Avenue
Winter Park, Florida 32789

Dear Bobbi,
Congratulations! After an intensive selection process The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens would like to feature your artwork for the upcoming exhibit “Sight Unseen: Touchable Sculpture.” The exhibit will be showcased from December 7, 2015 until April 17, 2016.
We would like to include your works, “Con Edison Concert” and “City of Orlando” in the exhibition.

Rachel Frisby
Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens
633 Osceola Avenue
Winter Park, Florida 32789
407-647-6294 (O)

Dear Bobbi,
I was happy for you when I saw the
Touchable Sculpture News on TV.
You made it to Winter Park!
Our Best Wishes,
Laura and John Miller

Dear Bobbi,
Thank you for the information about the exhibit at the Polasek Museum. Winter Park is a favorite spot for us.
Mark and I spent a lot of time there while in College at UCF.
I do hope to visit the display of your art work during the
dates listed on your Post Card.

Blessings for the New Year.
Mary Ann Richiuso Turner
Educator and your former third grade pupil (years ago)

Hi Bobbi,

It was a pleasure to meet you last night at the Polasek Museum Reception and to put a person with the art. You have some wonderful pieces and I love the way you develop your concept. Your work is beautifully made and a great fit for this exhibit.

Your website is delightfully attractive and bright, full of fun things; you have many talents. It’s a pleasure to know you in person. A passionate artist is always in style in my book.

I’m attaching the 2016 Membership Form for the Florida Sculptors Guild. We’d love to have you join us and hope to hear from you soon.

Cathy Farrar
Membership Chair
Florida Sculptors Guild

Dear Bobbi,
You are remarkable doing all that you are doing.
Looked at the Touchable Sculpture exhibit and
your piece is great fun.

Warm regards,
Anncha Briggs

Dear Bobbi,
Just finished reading about your sculptures for the Touchable Exhibit, fascinating and soooo detailed as are all of your creative endeavors…..I am always impressed at your scope of this amazing world and ambition to capture it all.
Sharing a childhood home gave us (and our siblings) opportunities to explore and create the life every child would love. Our parents encouraged the fine arts along with a very strong vein of independent thinking. Imagine, a home in the hills of Springville, New York that resounded with music and laughter. Our neighboring farmers probably rolled their eyes at the “city folk” trying to raise 6 children with chickens, a pet pig and acres of strawberries, while our dad drove into Buffalo each day where he sold Electrolux vacuum cleaners door to door.
Now, as I look back, I think of us as the Springville “Von Trap family”, singing and playing whenever possible. Hard work, honesty, high marks in school, being fine citizens and good neighbors were attributes highly prized by our parents.
Bobbi and I were the oldest, enjoying all of the rewards and responsibilities as such. We were very different, Bobbi always looked for challenges, gave every endeavor 150%, while I chose easy, fun, pretty projects. I would plant flowers or run to the woods to read a new book, as Bobbi tackled a huge report or essay. I chose easy “A” classes, while Bobbi chose the most difficult.
We are still very different in creativity, Bobbi loves sewer grates while I paint landscapes of sunshine and flowers. I always choose “pretty and elegant” as Bobbi chooses unique. We are appreciative of each others talents and pursuits, as we are of our younger siblings, all very talented and ambitious. We are blessed!!!
Your sister,
Judie Betschen Pufpaff

Dear Bobbi,
Every time I visit your blog, I again realize just how ‘grate’ you truly are!! You surely have been an inspiration to all of the other artists you have come in contact with, your many friends and neighbors and especially your family.
We love your intricate works and the way you explain not only how the grates are made, but how you received the ideas ~ so much research.
I love visiting your studio and seeing your new works in progress.
Bless you Al, for being so supportive and listening to yet another new idea, also for your endless wisdom, patience and different suggestions for an easier way to accomplish a new project.
With so much love and respect,
your sister,
Lois Betschen Kuras Pankow

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