Califia; A circus of working sculpture.The Circus of Dr. Macropolus
A Toast... to a Circus Boy.Details of the ‘Globe’ surround, the Burning Heart and Mexican palms.
A touch down miracle.

Gerard Howland

Emeryville, CA

Artistic Disciplines:
Visual Art
New Media

Artist Statement:

‘INTERSECTION: World Culture in the East Bay’

Statement of Interest

This is the little know story of Queen Califia, her orchard California, and the big ‘W’.
This mother of invention... a circus of working sculpture.

Imagine a West Coast touring Statue of Liberty – a Bay Corridor Meteor, a ‘Globe’ storyteller, touching down in the cities of Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley, Richmond, and across the globe, over the next four years. A celebration of pioneering spirits of the Golden State, a carnival of culture set at the Crossroads of The Burning Heart – a festival by day, a circus by night.

A free-standing chain, the largest ever made, a ‘snapshot in time’, stretching to the heavens, trails this golden mirrored Globe to the sites chosen by the four cities. By day, a carnival, celebrating the culture and riches of each city, as by night, from within it’s cauldron appears, a circus, a concert, a crawl; ‘The Circus of Dr. Macropolus’ and ‘The Blasted Heath Ball’.

The opening act is a circus rock opera, inspired by Shakespeare's Macbeth (currently celebrating its 400th anniversary), in a story told in spectacular vernacular, of California’s history. Act two transitions our show in to a live rock concert performance by a featured artist, or artists. In our third act we transition once again, this time our show becomes a rave, a dancing festival using East bay DJ's, transitioning this celebration in to a fun for all, Blasted Heath Ball.

And so, I bid the a welcome – one and all – to an allegorical storytelling, showcasing this region as California’s Crossroads of the Burning Heart, and its unique intersection of world culture.

Can this happen? The project creator and artist/designer, Gerard Howland, has been a Bay Area resident for over twenty years, and is best known in the region for his creation of the Coke Bottle & Mitt, and Splash Landing, at the GIANTS ballpark, in San Francisco. Mr. Howland was also the director of design for the San Francisco Opera for seven years. He has designed shows and attractions worldwide, for over thirty years. His clients have ranged from The Walt Disney Company to the Rolling Stones, the Royal Shakespeare Company and The American Conservatory Theater, in San Francisco. Mr. Howland, in collaboration with his partner, the concert producer Jason Thibault, have founded the ASC (The American Shakespeare Company), a company dedicated to bringing ‘FilmTheater’ to contemporary audiences, in non-conventional ‘Globe’ settings - ‘A Circus of Working Sculpture’. The ASC plans to produce this effort with the very best fabricators and artists, all working in the Bay corridor today. A detailed sculpture of the design is currently being fabricated, along with development of the engineering/fabrication drawings and project costs. The aim is to find sponsorship for this signature East Bay effort by winning this competition, to tell this story of This Crossroads of the Burning Heart worldwide.


The suggested locations for the next four years of appearances: Oakland’s location – tbd, Emeryville, at the Marina Park Meadow, Berkeley Marina and Richmond’s Ford Building.

Biographical and Contact Information.

Gerard Howland’s email address:
The ASC website address:  (link to bio)
The Circus of Dr. Macropolus website address:




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