At UC Davis you might be called an egghead and be proud of it. However. Wikipedia describes eggheads as: “U.S. English slang, egghead is an epithet used to refer to intellectuals or people considered out-of-touch with ordinary people and lacking in realism, common sense, sexual interests, etc. on account of their intellectual interests.”
Large ceramic sculptures collectively known as eggheads can be found across the campus. These seven eggheads were among Robert Arneson’s last works in 1991. Arneson, a former art professor at UC Davis, is considered the father of the ceramic Funk movement.
Tour the eggheads
Like the name, the egghead pieces are many folded, funny, with a wink into sarcasm. There are five stops on the egghead tour around campus. We started at the Welcome Center (550 Alumni Ln) to pick up a campus map. If you follow the road north on Mrak Hall Drive you’ll meet the first two eggheads: See No Evil/Hear No Evil. Notice that both sculptures are missing ears!
If you are touring on a day the administration building Mrak Hall is open you can cut through it to find the next stop: Eye on Mrak (Fatal Laff) The eye that ‘looks’ at Mrak reminds me of the Eye of Providence (also known as the all-seeing-eye). The other side is upside down and laughing.
Next, we turned east towards Lake Spafford and then north through the orange arches of Celeste Turner Wright Hall where you can see Yin & Yang. These two might look familiar. A replicate of them sits on the Embarcadero in San Francisco.
In front of the Shields library you’ll find my personal favorite: Bookhead. The head collapsed over a book, the nose right in the crease of it. I think this egghead needs sleep.
Lastly, Stargazer can be found by going north, then turning right onto Shields Ave. At the next opportunity, turn left on East Quad. Take a right after South Hall. Once you are in the courtyard turn left. Stargazer is near the original entrance of UC Davis, a brick wall from 1908.
Do you think eggheads are funny or have a deeper meaning?