This A term come to the Class of 1970 Café Gallery, on the main level, to see “The Gargoyles of Alumni Gymnasium,” photographs by Michael Voorhis, Computer Science Department Lab Manager. Years ago, as a WPI undergrad, Voorhis saw black and white photographs of the gargoyles in a professor’s office in the Humanities and Arts Department. He was struck with how there are things on campus that we walk by every day and do not see–like the gargoyles. It sparked his interest in photographing the gargoyles in color. When he heard Alumni Gym would have to be razed to make way for the Foisie Innovation Center, he knew the time had come to start recording the gargoyles for posterity.
There are 34 gargoyles in all: six on the shorter east and west walls, and eleven each on the long north and south walls. The majority are athletes of one sort or another, but there are others: spectators clapping their hands; singers with sheet music; musicians playing instruments. Voorhis notes the difficulty of photographing the figures with buildings and trees obstructing sightlines. Many of the photographs were taken from the upper floors of surrounding buildings. Not all of the gargoyles are included in the exhibition, but more can be seen on Voorhis’ flickr site.