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Sanborn A,A.jpg
Artist Jim Sanborn
Year 2004 (2004)
Location University of Houston
Owner University of Houston System

The A,A is a sculpture by artist Jim Sanborn, located on the campus of the University of Houston.


Jim Sanborn was born in 1945 in Washington, D.C. He grew up in Alexandria, Virginia and attended JEB Stuart High School in Fairfax, Virginia where he studied archaeology and Romanesque cathedrals. Sanborn later studied archaeology at Oxford University, and in 1968, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in paleontology, fine arts, and social anthropology from Randolph-Macon College. In 1971, he received a Master of Fine Arts degree in sculpture from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.[1]


The A,A is located on the campus of the University of Houston, adjacent to the M.D. Anderson Library. Completed in 2004, it was installed on campus at a reported cost of $240,000. The work of art took the sculptor a year to complete. The A,A is composed of portions of poems, novels, and prose from a number of different languages from different parts of the world. Some languages included on the art includes Arabic, Russian, Spanish, and Chinese. At night, a built-in light projector casts light through the sculpture. This causes the effect of illuminating the sculpture's text onto the outside of the library's walls.[2]

In addition to the sculpture in front of the M.D. Anderson Library, there are two additions from Sanborn inside the library. These include a 24-ft.-long bronze scroll detailing the history of papermaking that hang from the ceiling of the first floor and bronze panels along some of the guardrails containing portions of poems and other literature.[2]


  1. ^ "Jim Sanborn: Sculptor, Photographer, Artist". Elonka. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  2. ^ a b Vasquez, Leticia (June 28, 2004). "Art that speaks for itself". The University of Houston. Retrieved 2009-10-18.