In Search of the Chrinitoid


- n. (RPI) Two Rectangles Vertical Gyratory Up, a kinetic metal sculpture which was lent to the Institute by the sculptor, George Rickey, a professor at RPI from 1961 to 1966. Often confused with meteorological equipment on the Science Center. Although gone, it may be coming back.

~ Not the Rensselaer Handbook

Rickey Rectangles

One of the landmarks of RPI during my time in Troy was the George Rickey sculpture titled Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up, otherwise known as The Chrinitoid. It was removed from campus in the summer of 1984 (see this Polytechnic front page piece). Rumor always had it that Mr. Rickey wanted RPI to buy it and they couldn't come to terms financially. I have always wondered where the sculpture ended up.

I visited RPI back in December of 1997. While there, I took this picture. Obviously, others hope that the Chrinitoid can be returned to it's former home if we ever find it! Today, you will find a different Rickey sculpture at the Chrinitoid site. This sculpture, Six Random Lines Excentric, was a gift from Rensselaer Trustee Nancy Mueller. It was dedicated in September 2000. Read about it here.


One day, while standing in front of the (then) recently renovated San Francisco Public Library, I noted out of the corner of my eye a seemingly familiar object. No, it was not the Chrinitoid but a sculpture known as "Double L Eccentric Gyratory" by the artist George Warren Rickey. At the time, I didn't remember the name of the artist responsible for the Chrinitoid, but the name sounded familiar. I went inside to see if the library had any information on the artist.

This was apparently the beginning of my search for the Chrinitoid.

I am not sure of the year that the search started, but the Library renovation was completed in 1997.  At the time, I was working for a company called Sense8. While they are now out of business, at the time, they were a leading developer of virtual reality software. Since we were always looking for ways to demonstrate our technology, I build a simple model of the Chrinitoid. You can see a resultant animation here.

After a while, I got curious about the Chrinitoid's where about and put up the first "In Search of the Chrinitoid" webpage. This attracted the attention of a number of people, mostly RPI alumni. Eventually (in February of 2004), I received the following note:

Dear Tom,
I collect George Rickey Sculptures. I saw by chance your search for this particular sculpture.
Though I do not know where the "Chrinitoid" is, it is very likely that the office manager for the George Rickey Workshop , Birgit , ( pronounced Beergit ) will know where it is. Since the work is very large it is likely at a public institution ( like an art museum ). George sold alot of works in Europe, so this particular work could be anywhere! If it is in a public setting I'm sure that she will provide you with it's location. She may have to research it for you.
Birgit can be reached at The Rickey Workshop at 518-794-7194. I believe that she works Tuesdays through Fridays.
Good Luck,
Please let me know if you find it.
Best Regards,

Bob Hamilton

I immediately reached out to Birgit and she was extremely informative. Here are my notes from our conversations:

Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyrotory Up, Variation III
1970; Stainless Steel
Height 35'
Rectangles 19'6" x 59"

Remove from campus in summer 1984. returned to the Rickey workshop
East Chatham, NY

Rickey died 7/17/2002
professor of art at RPI 1960-65
friend of Roland Hummel (now in his 80's)

Sold in 1990
HQ of Bank in Zurich (Union Bank of Switzerland)

The key bit of information, obviously, was that the Chrinitoid had been sold to the Union Bank of Switzerland. It actually took some time for it to click that "Union Bank of Switzerland" was better known in the states as "UBS". A couple more Google searches and I found the curator of the UBS Art collection. I filled out a form on their website, but never really expected a reply. Incredibly, I got a reply (the next day):

Dear Mr Payne
Thank you very much for your inquiry regarding the sculpture by George Rickey. It is indeed owned by UBS and located in front of of the "Schanzenbrücke-Building" in the heart of Zurich. It is a commissioned artwork by Rickey made especially for this place. We have also a smaller sculpture by Rickey from 1989. This was the first idea to put in front of the Zurich building. It is placed in our Wolfsberg Executive Development Centre at the lake Constance (1 h from Zurich)(see attachment). Unfortunately I do not have a jpg from the Zurich sculpture but if you wish we can find one. To visit both sculptures is not a problem - they are located in public spaces. Please let us know what kind of information you need?

with kind regards

Dominik Saam

Visiting the Chrinitoid: A couple of more emails with Mr. Saam and the location of the Chrinotoid was pinpointed...almost. Mr. Saam notes that it is located in front of the UBS Headquarters in the heart of Zurich, Switzerland. Finding the "Schanzenbrücke-Building" was not easy. Here is a picture of the building...but no sign of the Chrinitoid. A picture I found on the Zurich tourism site indicates that it is located at "Schanzengraben, 8001 Zürich". Schanzengraben is apparently a small river that flows through downtown. You can see a river in the foreground. After locating some maps of the city, this appears to be nearest the UBS offices at Stockerstrasse 64.



If you get anywhere near hear, be sure to take a picture and send it my way...

Thanks to Google Maps, I can provide satellite imagery of the Chrinitoid site. Click here and look for a pale, blurry bow-tie between the shadow of the octagonal Schanzengraben building and the river. This is the Chrinitoid!


The Article: I wrote an article for the Winter 2004 Rensselear Alumni magazine. It has generated a number of emails from Chrinitoid fans over the years. Drop me a note and I'll add your comments for others to enjoy.

The Chrinitoid , AKA George Rickey's "Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up " - 2/8/2004
Dear Tom,
I collect George Rickey Sculptures. I saw by chance your search for this particular sculpture.
Though I do not know where the "Chrinitoid" is, it is very likely that the office manager for the George Rickey Workshop , Birgit , ( pronounced Beergit ) will know where it is. Since the work is very large it is likely at a public instution ( like an art museum ). George sold alot of works in Europe, so this particular work could be anywhere! If it is in a public setting I'm sure that she will provide you with it's location. She may have to research it for you.
Birgit can be reached at The Rickey Workshop at 518-794-7194. I believe that she works Tuesdays through Fridays.
Good Luck,
Please let me know if you find it.
Best Regards,

Bob Hamilton
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 5/14/2004

I too have missed the presence of the Chrinitoid at RPI, and I note its absence on every return trip (I was class of 1984, CompSci). Today I saw a picture of some other sculpture online and thought of the Chrinitoid and once again plugged it into Google, but this time I found your page and the indication that it had been found! Now if I ever make it to Zurich I will definitely have to visit it. Thanks for locating it!

Erik Tkal
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
chrinitoid! - 6/29/2004

Let me first say THANK YOU for finding the Chrin. I've been looking for it for years now.

Also, thanks for the links ... (ps. my last name is "Staton", not "Stanton"). The "70's photo" of the Chrinitoid is one I took in 1983 or 1984. I am rescanning my old slides (I recently got a Coolscan V ED) and I'll send you the best shots of the Chrin I have.

Keep up the good work!
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Two Rectangles Vertical etc - 11/19/2004
I found your page on a web search for "Two Rectangles Vertical Gyratory Up"
- I also remember the Chrinitoid from my years at RPI (74-82), and was talking with a guy I was in school with about it this evening. What brought the topic up is that Princeton (who RPI plays in hockey tomorrow) has a Rickey sculpture on campus, and I had spotted it on a tour there last summer.

The child we were making college tours for is now a freshman at RPI...


Joe Makowiec can be reached at:
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
chrinitoid - 12/13/2004
I remember it from 71-75. In Switzerland? Not likely to be there soon.
They do have a penchant for keeping things in good repair there, so of all places on earth for a kinetic sculpture of this type - this may well be chritinoidal nirvana.

John G Bishop III, PhD
Branch Chief, Manufacturers Assistance and Technical Training Branch
Division of Manufacturers Assistance and Training
Office of Communication, Training, and Manufacturers Assistance
Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research/FDA
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/14/2005
Hi, I really enjoyed reading about your search for the Chrinitoid in the RPI alum magazine. The funny thing is I was in Zurich a couple of summers ago. Wouldn't it have been cool to stumble upon the sculpture and recognize it? Unfortunately I became very ill and had to return home after only one day (spent mostly in bed) in the city. Maybe next time.

Did you know your web site lists the height of our beloved scupture as
35 inches? I think there's a typo!

Kathy Opal Goff '78
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
RPI Chrinitoid - 1/14/2005
Thanks for finding the Chrinitoid! Man, that brought back memories.
Have you found any pictures of the new Rickey structure?

I just mentioned it on my blog tonight.

RPI '86, Zeta Psi

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/15/2005
Hi Tom:
I enjoyed your essay about your search of the Chrinitoid. I was a professor of physics at RPI from 1955 to 1986, and I still have an office space in the physics department. I am a native of Zurich and visit every year my home town. I also saw George Rickey regularly during his last few years at chamber music concert series held every September near Pittsfield, MA. There he told me about his negotiations with the UBS people after I had asked him where the sculpture was after it was removed from the campus. The next time I went to Zurich I looked at the Chrnitoid as an old acquaintance and since then sometimes make a detour to look at it again. In honesty I find its present place more suitable than the one on campus. However the new Rickey sculpture "Six Random Lines Excentric" is a very fine beautification of the campus.
Many years ago rumor was among the faculty that Rickey wanted $60,000 for the Chrinitoid which the Trustees considered too expensive! There is still another Rickey sculpture on campus, on an outside wall of the Folsom Library, donated by a senior class. By the way, the Schanzengraben is a water filled trench outside the fortified wall, since Zurich being a city had a wall for its protection around it.
I am somewhat surprised that Rickey had Alzheimer; if he had it, certainly not for many years and not very strongly.
I hope that you can visit Zurich and see the Chrinitoid. It is within walking distance from the center of town.
All the best!
Heinrich Medicus
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid Found - 1/15/2005

When I read your ONELAST THING... article I was shocked that the sculpture was removed in 1984. Although I graduated from RPI in 1968 I seem to remember the sculpture very well and revelled in gently touching it to watch its great leaves move. I guess I must have seen it while visiting, because I imagined it was in place when I was an undergraduate student. Could it be another kinetic sculpture once stood there or nearby?

I enjoyed your article very much. Its always nice to know that one's own magical icons have the same impact on others.

Charlie de la Motte, Math '68 RPI
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
George Rickey sculpture - Cincinnati - 1/16/2005
Tom -

My daughter is currently an RPI student (5th yr Arch.) and as I was reading the current issue of Rensselaer magazine, I came across your article regarding the George Rickey sculpture.

I work in downtown Cincinnati and frequently pass the George Rickey sculpture at the PNC Building. I thought this was perhaps your "missing" George Rickey sculpture - but I see it is a variation. In any case, it is a beautiful piece of work - and how neat that it was designed by an RPI Professor of Architecture.

Thanks for the article.

Minette Krietemeyer
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
"In search of the Chrinitoid" - 1/16/2005
Hi there,
My name is Charlene Chotalal and I am currently a senior at RPI. I am on co-op in CT and staying with an RPI grad. He showed me a copy of the most recent Alumni Magazine and pointed to this article that you wrote(hopefully im getting the right person). Of course when I saw the picture, I recognized the football field in the back and then saw this interesting structure. My first thought was "that's not there...." I went on to read the article and learned of your discovery of the location of the structure and thought it was very neat. I read one line in there that I'd like to comment one: "But for the rest of us, it left a huge gap in the middle of campus that remained empty, the threaded bolts protruding ...."
As I was reading that I thought to myself "but theres something there now...." I am not entirely sure when the last time you visited RPI was, but in 1996, there was a new Rickey installation that was put in and that is still there. As a freshman, I used to stand there and looked at the impending spikes of "Six Random Lines Eccentric" sway with the wind and thought it was magic. If you haven't seen it, I think you should :) That's all for now.....good article though!

-Charlene C.
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
A man after my own heart! - 1/17/2005
Hi Tom,

I'm a Rensselaer '83 alumnus and meant to contact you immediately this past Friday after reading your simply GREAT Chrinitoid article in the alumni magazine. Other stuff intervened however, and I only remembered to contact you now, 3 1/2 days later.

I was on campus in November, for the first time in 17 years, and right away, I noticed that the Chrinitoid was missing. Googling it and finding it was on my "to do when I have a chance" list, and I just plain forgot, until seeing your article.

The way you described your obsession, your googling, your digging and digging, etc., was me exactly. I'm afraid to show your article to my wife, lest she freak. Right now, she thinks I'm the only one in the world like that. Must be that little school in Troy that does it?

When I saw your web site, I noticed you were in Sig Ep. My freshman roommate, Bill Cohen, was in Sig Ep as well. I was in Pi Kappa Alpha and never really knew our '86 brothers that well, so I'm not sure if you knew him. Bill was an usher in my wedding in 1986, and he and I still keep in touch by email a few times a year.

I probably could have spent my time getting a reasonably good education at a school where I'd have had a lot more fun than I did at RPI, but every time I talk with a friend from college, the memories and laughs come pouring back.

Anyway, thanks for a great article. I hope the people around you in your life were as thrilled as you when you reunited with the Chrinitoid.

Dave George
BSCS, 1983
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chrinitoid - 1/17/2005

Enjoyed your essay in the recent alumni magazine. I guess there are two kinds of people – those who were intrigued by the thing and those who… weren’t. I am, like you, intrigued by it, and enjoyed sitting and watching it for longer than is probably healthy. On the other hand, my wife would probably get along quite well with yours.

As a mechanical engineer, I always wanted to create a piece of similar nature, twisting slowly, silently, randomly in the wind. Haven’t done it yet – guess it’ll have to wait a few more years until I retire.


Jeff Gorss ‘66
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
chrinitoid - 1/19/2005
hey tom, i am patrick ormond, remember me from sig ep? i was one of those childish sophmores that u had to deal with in the house when u were president back in 85-86, sorry about all that :-)

well i wanted to drop u a note to tell u i thoroughly enjoyed ur article on the chrinitoid in the rensselaer magazine... it really brought me back... that sculpture, if u can call it that, really was interesting ... even when i was a high schooler touring the campus, it stood out to me... it kind of perplexed everyone because it wasnt particularly artistic, and it didn't seem to have any function or value, yet there it was, on prominent display flapping away, as if to be some sort of engineering marvel ! well like it or hate it, no one can deny that it was memorable...

one question i have is about the date of removal, i could have sworn it was still there when i was in my freshman year of 84-85, i seem to be able to remember walking through there on the way to class on a cold grey windy morning hearing the whooshing sound of it flapping in the wind... but perhaps i only remember it from my high school tour and summer orientation (june 84) ... are u sure it was removed in the summer of 84?

well i am glad to hear it's still out there perplexing people... if i am ever in zurich i will be sure to seek it out for the fun of it... btw, i vaguely remember someone saying that the interesting thing about it is that they were very heavy slabs of stainless steel, yet they appeared light to the wind... somehow i got the impression they were solid... is that true?

well thanks for the article tom, i am sure it will evoke a lot of memories to whoever went to rpi during that time period...

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrin - 1/19/2005
Thanks for the article in the Rennselaer Magazine. I miss the Chrin too. I was a '86 RPI graduate in ChemE.

My roomate and I used to try and play 'spin the chrin' on trips back from downtown. We were bummed when they took it away.

Dan Evans
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid article - 1/19/2005

Thanks for the Chrinitoid article... and the crazy 3d simulation, too much. I passed on the info to some fellow alumni, and now I'm hearing some noise about a screensaver... I'll let you know, but don't hold your breath.

Thanks again,
Frank Hurley '85
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/20/2005

I enjoyed the article on the Chrinitoid. I vaguely remember it being
erected on campus, but do recall watching it's motion being power by the
wind. Thanks for the research and bringing back the memories.


Roy Kell '74
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chinitoid - 1/21/2005
I saw the article at the end of the latest RPI Alumni magazine about your search for the elusive Chrinitoid. Thanks for all your efforts, I always wondered what happened to it. It was my most favorite thing on the RPI campus during my 4 years there (1974-1978), and I was sorry to see, on subsequent visits to the campus, that it had disappeared from the landscape. We can now rest assured that it has found a good home. It is too bad that its final home is not on its original pad overlooking the '86 field. The "new Chrinitoid" pictured in the web site just isn't the same.

It may have been before your time, but there was a period of a few months when one of two the great rectangles was immobilized, assumedly because of mechanical problems. A rotating collar was attached to the mast at about 1/3 of its height. This prevented the rectangle from pivoting on its arm (keeping it straight down all of the time), but allowed the sculpture free rotation around the mast.

Thanks for the Chrinitoid memories!


Eric Wawrousek, Ph.D.
Chief, Transgenic Animal and Genome Manipulation Section
National Eye Institute
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/22/2005

I enjoyed the story about the Chrinitoid in the Rensellaer magazine.
I was at RPI in 1982-83 for my masters. I know that I have pictures
of it which, when found, I will scan and email to you, if you're still
interested. I always liked watching the Chrinitoid dance. Thank you.

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Re: New job... - 1/22/2005

Just saw your article in the Engineer. Nice that SOMEBODY still remembers the Crinitoid. I graduated in 1983, so it was there ALL the time I was there. Not the same for you.


Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinatoid - 1/22/2005
Great article in the RPI alumni magazine. Good detective work and an interesting story.
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chrin - 1/22/2005
Dear Tom,

I, too, am enamored with its memory.

Allow me to introduce myself: Jon Pollick, ’83.

I haven’t been very interested in any alumni activities since I left RPI in May of ’83, but I do glance through the Rensselaer alumni rag when it arrives in the mail. I quickly turn to my class notes to see who’s doing what (if I remember who they were), and then to the back for One Last Thing. Much to my surprise and joy, I read your article and just couldn’t stop smiling.

The Chrinitoid is a cherished memory of my days in Troy. Without going into too much detail, my first couple of months there were very challenging – not from an academic standpoint (much to my parents’ chagrin) – but, from a love-obsessed teenager standpoint – yup, the unrequited love scenario. Sometimes I wonder how I got through that first semester without flunking out – she did.

Through it all, the Chrin was a dear companion. I spent many an evening lying on the grass underneath it staring up into the sky – it was my refuge in uncertain times. My friends thought I was nuts – though, once in a while, one of them would show up and join me for a good mental cleansing – and a beer or two (it was ‘18’ back then).

Turns out, on one particularly blustery night, I felt compelled to write down my thoughts while sitting under the Chrin – part of my self-imposed therapy to get that woman out of my head. Well, what turned out got published (my fifteen minutes of fame) - I don’t know if you remember The Gorgon, the literary/poetry magazine published by the students. Just for fun, I rifled through a box of old stuff and found my copy of the magazine (heck, I was published!). I have attached a copy of my masterpiece for your amusement – it’s not too deep, so no doubt you’ll pick up on some of the imagery – the rest is just babble from a love-sick puppy.

The wife’s calling for dinner, so I’ll wrap it up here – Thank You. Thank You for bringing back good memories of a truly creative piece of sculpture, and an inanimate companion of one very immature young man. It still stands out as one of my fondest memories of those lost years.

Yours truly,


P.S. Another piece of Rickey’s work was in a town about 45 minutes from me – not the same (nothing’s like the original), but a tribute to the man nonetheless. If I get up there and it’s still there, I’ll email a photo of it to you. Take care.

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
RPI Chrinitoid - 1/26/2005

Just read your article in the Winter 2004 Rensselaer.

When I moved to Pleasanton (east bay area of San Francisco) I thought I found the Chrinitoid at a local business park. When RPI folks visit I take them over for a quick look. I am not sure if there are multiple copies/installations of this sculpture but I will take a picture of our copy next time I am in the park and will forward it to you.

I will ask the real estate folks that manage the place where our version came from.

I wish I knew it was missing.... I would have sent a note sooner ;)

Best regards,

Ed Toy, BSEE 1984 MEng 1987
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/27/2005
Tom -

I too was at RPI when the Chrinitoid was there. I was a member of the Class of 1978; and my husband was in the Class of 1980.

I enjoyed your story about the Chrinitoid in Rensselaer magazine. It was so much of a presence on campus. I don't think I'll ever see RPI in my mind without picturing it there. If I ever get to Zurich someday, I hope to see it. Thanks for the write-up on it and the memories!

Kindest regards,


Karen Lee Baouche, M.S., M.B.A.
Senior Project Manager, Analgesia and Rheumatology
SCIREX Corporation
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
<no subject> 1/28/2005
Hi to all RPI alums: The story of the Rickey's Chrinitoid was particularly interesting to me because I have had many occasions to watch one work at the Peoria Illinois Airport during my career at Caterpillar's Engine Division. I never did get to see a signature plack on it but I'm sure that it is one of his fasinating works. It is located in a secure area so that I can't get to check it out, but it is only 30 feet or so from the windows of the non secure airport waiting room and is easily viewed by those of you that might have the occasion to be flying in and out of our airport. Cheers John O. Henderson, Class of 1953
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
the 'toid - 1/31/2005
I LOVED the article on the chrinitoid, and have been equally curious over all these years as to what had happened to it. Thanks for the investigation.
I thought it was a "landmark" on campus as much so that I started my own "memories of RPI" web pages with a picture I'd taken of it freshman year.

John-Joseph Bober '86
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid, we knew yea well - 2/1/2005
Dear "Rensselaer",

Imagine my surprise at seeing my name in the magazine this month, and twice in the same article. Tom White and I authored the "Not the Rensselaer Handbook" back in 1985 as a parody of the real student handbook, and we included factoids about campus life that were relevant at the time. Alas, the Chrinitoid was just removed as we began our final drafts (well, truth is, we just stopped writing), so we left it in.

My obsession with the Chrinitoid is almost as strong as Tom Payne's. I've traveled several times back to campus and stood where it once was, trying to remember its massive panes delicately twisting in the breeze. The new sculpture is magnificent in its own way, but it's not the stunning accomplish that Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyrotory Up represented. I put up some images on early (mid-90's) web sites I created for my fellow WRPI alumni, and Tom found the image he uses there. I am sorry to say I didn't take many photos of the Chrinitoid when I was at RPI (1981-85), but the few I do have I'll scan and post on my website for all to see.

Remember that in NtRH, Tom White and I predict the return of the Chrinitoid ... the Swiss had better bolt it down tight ... Rensselaer pranksters are notorious for taking on heavy-duty challenges like this!

Steve "Skates" Staton '85
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up - 2/1/2005
Hello Tom,

My name is Scott Hunt and I graduated RPI in '90 and completed my masters in '92. That's not interesting I know but that entire time I lived at the George Rickey Worship! I didn't know anybody was looking for that particular sculpture and I too remember the threaded rods and nuts. I worked on the piece before it went to Zurich in 90. I would see the sculpture everyday when I left the workshop to go to school. I commuted to RPI and worked at the shop whenever I could. I started as a crate builder and made my way into the shop as a fabricator. George was great to work for and I was in like flynn because I was going to RPI.

I remember when the sculpture was to be installed in Zurich but I couldn't go because it interferred with my classes. George sent me that summer to Germany to adjust a piece in a bank in Munich and I stayed in his studio in Berlin. I greatly enjoyed my 5 yrs at the Rickey workshop. I built many sculptures from scratch and all were inspected by George. I wouldn't trade my experience at the Rickey workshop for anything and I do believe I learned as much there as I did at RPI. I now live in South Carolina with my wife and 3 children.

If I can help you in any way or answer any questions about the sculptures I would be happy too.
By the way , all the sculptures were made mostly of 304 Stainless and all bearing shafts were made of 416 SS. I know of no aluminum pieces other than a maquette or 2.

Tell your wife your not Crazy!!!!!

Hope you get to Zurich to see the Chrinitoid some day!!!

Scott Hunt
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Re: Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up - 2/1/2005

I do not know the exact conversation George had with the 'tute but I do know that he desired to keep it at RPI. $60K was a steal and the 'tute really messed that up. Since George has died the values of his sculptures would be considerable higher. In '90 I would have estimated the sculpture to be ~250,000 and about $500,000 today or higher. I fabricated one over the summer of '91 that was called 4 squares vertical eccentric that sold to a Japanese buyer for $250,000. That sculpture stood only 12' high. I guess I need to break out the welder again and build one for the school!!! Just kidding.

George always talked fondly of the school to me. He hired Roland Hummel who also taught at RPI to be his PE. Roland would size the bearings and shafts for various wind loads, spec out the proper base requirements to mount the sculptures too and many other calculations. I used to, after work, go through the files and check out the calculations. That Job was a tremendous asset to me as a prdouct development engineer with Michelin. I was truly blessed when George hired me. He knew that my goal in life at that time was to graduate from RPI and he helped make it happen. George was always pro RPI around me and expected me to keep him up to date with my grades and what I was taking for classes. He was of course a highly intelligent man and was to me a unique mixture of engineer and artist.

As to his death he was 93! He lived an incredibally productive life. I was never told the exact cause of death. I know in his last yrs he went to live with his son Philip in St. Paul. I know that as he got to where he couldn't weld he started painting again. He documented everything he ever did since a child. I used to read about his experiences as a child. He seemed to know that one day he would be famous at some level.

As to drawings for the Chrinitoid they should be on file at the studio in East Chatham. They contain multiple views and details and are fairly simple to understand. There is a lot on machine shop work that is required to produce the workings of a Rickey sculpture.

Hope that helped!

----- Original Message -----
From: Tom Payne
To: 'Scott Hunt'
Sent: Tuesday, February 01, 2005 7:14 PM
Subject: RE: Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up


It's great to hear from you. I've gotten a lot of email as a result of the article, but none from someone who could be as "valuable" to the search as you. I never thought I would have the pleasure of corresponding with someone who actually knew Rickey. I have tons of questions, but here are some starters:

- People talk about bringing the Chrinitoid back to campus. My goal in finding the sculpture was to someday raise enough money to buy it back. Chances are not good that UBS would be willing to sell it, but do you have any idea what such a piece would get on the open market?

- Do you know anything about the removal? Rumor was that George wanted the 'tute to pay $60k to retain the loaner, but they claimed poverty. Is there any truth to this? From your email, it sounded like George remained fond of the school. Was this the case?

- I got an email from one of the professors who knew George (Heinrich Medicus) who doubts that he died of Alzheimer's. Do you know anything about this? (I reported Alzheimer's based on a website I read. I am curious as my father-in-law is suffering from ALZ and it creates an odd connection)

- Do any kind of schematics exist for the Chrinitoid? It would certainly make an RPI engineer's heart warm to see them.

That's it for now.

Thanks for writing

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Thanks for the Chrinitoid update - 2/2/2005
Hello Tom,

I read your article in the Winter 2004 edition of Rensselaer and was intrigued enough to visit your web site. Just wanted to say THANKS for updating all of us RPI grads from the era who had the pleasure (and I really mean that...I LOVED that sculpture!) of passing by the "Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up, Variation III" every day on their way to and from class. I was surprised to learn that the sculpture was actually on load to the school and shocked that RPI let such an elegant and important SYMBOL slip through its technological fingers. Hopefully it was not because RPI didn't try as hard as it could to secure the dual multiple revolving axis monoliths for all ages, but Mr. Rickey's refusal to sell it for anything but the most inappropriate of prices. Maybe, just maybe, the Union Bank of Switzerland will an act of grand international good will, consider giving the statue back to RPI. For what goes around...comes around. Hopefully.

Again, thanks for the information and reviving some fond memories.

Lou Parry/Class of 75'

P.S. Now that I think about it, I don't believe I ever knew it was called the Chrinitoid during those blissful 4 years I was majoring in Physics at RPI from 71-75. Was it called that from the very beginning?
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chrinitoid - 2/2/2005
Congratulations! You found it!
I attended RPI from the fall of '72 until spring '75. The Chrinitoid became an old, mostly reliable friend. I say mostly because one day after a particularly windy session, we arrived to find one panel on the ground.
I cannot recall whether it was damaged or not. But it was soon back up.
I spent many, many hours underneath it, looking up, sometimes after tasty mind altering treats. There it went, round-and-round, quietly, wonderfully mysterious. Part of its mystique was the wind, part was the size.
I also recall not everyone was taken by it, but that did not affect the rest of us. I also went back around 1991-92, and it was gone. I hoped it may come back, but I recall thinking it may have suffered neglect and had to be removed.
Should a campaign to buy and restore it be organized, please get in touch with me for a donation! I don't see why it could not happen.

Sincerely yours,
Bruce Herring '75
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 2/4/2005
I left RPI in Jan 72, but I remember the sculpture so it MUST have been put up before 1972.
Also the UBS website says that it is version III, made(?) in 1990.
Could it be that this is not the original? Maybe you need to keep searching??
-Anyway, a nice article in the Alumni Magazine.
John Dodds '70.
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chrinitoid (sp?) - 2/5/2005
Dear Tom,

I read your article on the chrinitoid in the latest alumni magazine with considerable interest. The chrinitoid has a special place in my heart.

I thought you might like to know of the genesis of the name. Way back in high school, a friend of mine used the word to refer to unspecified internal organs (e.g., "uhgg, he got me right in the chrinatoids"). When I went to RPI, the first club I joined was the humor magazine, _Unicorn_. I came up with an idea for a fake Reader's Digest article, of the sort that were running at that time (this was 1972, mind you). I borrowed my friend's word, drew a small picture and wrote part of an article about it. The first JPG file I've attached shows you the result. (Note: the afterword was added by someone else!)

For some reason, the _Unicorn_ staff took the idea and ran with it, basing practically the whole issue of the magazine on the idea (see second JPG file). Inexplicably, they spelled it wrong -- that is, if it is possible to misspell a neologism that has no real meaning.

And, to coin a phrase, the rest is history. The word caught on around campus, and the Rickey sculpture was never called anything else. I suppose "chrinitoid" was easier to say than "Two Rectangles, Vertical Gyratory Up, Variation III."

I'm glad you found the sculpture lurking in Europe. I've wondered where it'd got to.
If you want to use the attached pictures on your website, feel free.

Best wishes,
Sandy Stewart, '76
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
RPI Chrinitoid - 2/9/2005
Hello Tom,

My name is Martin Royer and I graduated RPI class of 1982 (BA Computer Science). As I was reading your article I was just feeling awful to learn that it was decided to do away with the Chrinitoid. I remember talking about it with other students in the lounge of Nugent Hall (Or did that take that away too?) and how cool it was. The idea that they would take it away is SO FAR from what I would think would be "intuitively obvious to even the casual observer". I have not been back to the campus since I graduated, but knew that I would always look forward to seeing the Chrinitoid again whenever I visited the campus and how seeing it would help me reconnect the dots of my memories of those 4 years.

Thanks so much for doing the research and finding it at it's new home. Perhaps someday I will travel to Zurich to see it. I looked thru my old RPI pictures and hoped that there might be a pic of me standing next to in. But in fact, I have very few pics of my 4 years at RPI. Something now regret.

I now living in the Los Angeles area and work for a company that is in the video editing business.

Take care

Martin R
Burbank, CA
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Rickey sculpture - 2/10/2005
Hi, Tom -- thanks for finding our campus landmark! I spent untold hours sitting on the green watching it while I did homework or chatted with friends. In my day, there was also a kinetic sculpture in the student union -- wall mounted, slowly shifting tapered metal pieces about a yard or so long. I think this was also by Rickey, but am not certain. Any news on it? Thanks again for your devotion to this elegant, simple sculpture! Pat Henking RPI '76
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Re: In Search of the Chrinitoid - 2/19/2005
Dear: "Rensselaer" and Tom Payne,

I really enjoyed reading Tom Payne's article, "In Search of the Chrinitoid,"
in the Winter 2004 edition of "Rensselaer." Reading it brought me to the revelation that I had, in fact, spotted the Chrinitoid in Zurich, yet had dismissed the encounter as an impossibility!

In February of 2004 I was in Zurich with my family and glimpsed the Chrinitoid from a distance. Since we were only there for a cold winter afternoon before heading back to the US after a week of skiing in the Swiss Alps, and since my college reminiscing generates little interest from the family, I only commented on it briefly to my wife, Karen, and we moved on to pursue indoor, and warmer, activities. My comment, however, was one of immediate fond recollection, followed by surprise that there could possibly be two of these sculptures in existence; yet who would ship something that large across an ocean and continent? Impossible.

Anyway, I dismissed the thought and we went about enjoying the final day of our vacation. But the encounter triggered strong reminders of those glorious days of RPI in the 70's. I recall reaching up and trying to touch the slowly moving slabs as they drifted by. Success was only achieved by getting up on someone's shoulders, and a patient wait for a favorable rotation since the top of the post swiveled as well. And only by touching a slab was it's true mass revealed. Ah, such stimulus for a young engineer's mind!

Best regards,

Chris Cole '79
Windham, NH
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Crinitoid - 2/24/2005

Thanks for your earlier column about the Crinitoid in the Tute alumni mag. I, too, remember the Crinitoid fondly and the way that they used to anchor the thing to the Greene Building for its annual balance. It certainly lent character to the place...

I thought you might like to know that after reading your article, I asked someone I know that works at UBS Financial Services in Texas about the Rickey sculpture, thinking he could get me a photo for you - He sent me a link to their online gallery which features artwork that they have purchased around the world. There is a George Rickey sculpture featured on that website that is not the Crinitoid.

I suspect that this "Four Trapazoids as Two Rectangles" is owned through a different arm/foundation of the company. I looked for the Chrinitoid but didn't manage to find it on this website. I must admit, though that I could do a fair amount more noodling on the site to see if I can uncover it. If I do, I'll let you know.

Joann Taylor
RPI '81, '83, '84.
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chrinitoid - 2/24/2005

I read with great interest your article, "In Search of the Chrinitoid", in the Winter issue of Rensselaer magazine. I recall your name from my days at RPI, though I can't place exactly where. It has been almost 20 years. I also graduated in 86', Computer Systems Engineering. I must either remember you from that or from fraternity stuff, Pi Kappa Alpha, IFC president at one point, did some senior week and student gov stuff. I've asked a buddy of mine from RPI who happens to be in Geneva to let me know if he ever gets over to Zurich and can send along a photo of the Chrinitoid. I also noticed that we happen to have similar jobs - I'm a solutions consultant for Siebel Systems, having spent about 7 years at Procter & Gamble, 7 more at Oracle and a brief stint at an internet startup before this gig.

I happen to live in Cincinnati now as do lots of RPI alum who made their way to either P&G or GE, so I pass by Two Rectangles Vertical Gyratory II, Variation IV almost every day on my way to work. Here are a couple more photos of this one.

Anyway - great article.

Jeff Pedicini
RPI, Class of '86
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 2/27/2005

I was intrigued by your article in the winter Rensselaer magazine about the Chrinitoid, I always liked it, one of the few pieces of modern art to really have my admiration. The magazine arrived as I was planning a business trip that gave me a chance to go and check it out for myself. I just returned yesterday, and I found it, and yes, this does definitely appear to be our Chrinitoid. It looks no worse for wear than I remember it in the late '70s and '80. Seeing it in person helped confirm that it was indeed our Chrinitoid, from details like the access panel covers near the bearings that I remembered once seeing them again and the way it behaved in the wind. There was no strong wind the day I was in Zurich, so the panels mostly just hung limply and waved a bit occasionally, but it often did this at RPI too. I suspect it doesn't often get the strong winds in the city streets that it got on the hill above the '86 field; I remember some days at Rensselaer when it would really get twisting in the wind. It's along a river, but this is surrounded by buildings. I was there on a wintery Sunday, when there were not many people on the streets, but I suspect it's not as well loved by its new banker owners as it was by us. It's only one of a number of pieces of art I saw in the city of Zurich.

I now have a lot of digital pictures, and some movies made with my digital camera. Now, to figure out what to do with them. Do you want to use them? Maybe I'll put them up on a website when I get time.

I've attached a sampling of reduced size (but still large) pictures out of about 65 that I took. These were taken on Sunday, February 20, 2005.

Gary Strait '79 (and MSEE in '80)
Poughkeepsie, NY
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 3/1/2005
Hi Tom,

I just read your article in the RPI Alumni magazine - I also graduated from RPI, BS 87, MS 89 - see the magazine takes some time to get to me because I live in ... Switzerland - Zurich to be exact. I did an exchange year here at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, which started my fascination with Europe, and a number of years after working in NYC I moved back. Anyhow, when I saw the picture of the sculpture in the magazine, I knew I had seen that sculpture before, but am really not sure where. I transfered to RPI in Fall 84 and dont pass that UBS building much, but I know I have definately seen that sculpture, watched it move - perhaps it's the collective RPI memory. Anyhow, I know where the sculpture is, even took a walk by it tonight to make sure it was still there - a quick walk as it was cooooold outside. So you can live vicariously thru me for the time being and I guess what I can offer you is to take you right to it should you ever be able to visit Zurich.

Let me know if I can help you in any other way
- Leah Rollhaus
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 3/5/2005

I read with interest your article in the alumni mag. Are you aware that there is once again a Rickey sculpture in that spot? ("Six Random Lines Excentric") I saw it when visiting in Oct 2003. I don't know when exactly it showed up, but sometime between fall '98 and then. If you are intersted I can send you some digital pics.

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
chrinitoid - 3/15/2005
Enjoyed your piece on the chrinitoid in the winter Rensselaer.

It arrived on campus about the same time I did (’72). As I recall it seemed to be very sensitive to the adjustment of the internal weights. I believe it was rickey himself that we would see out there on ladders making adjustments, seemingly every other week. The picture on your web site suggests it could use an adjustment – the long ends of the panel seem to be hanging down instead of floating in the breeze. The mechanism was so finely balanced that even a gentle rain would coat the steel with enough water to make the rectangles sag.

Thanks for taking me back to an earlier time!

- Glenn Roberts, ‘72
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Hey Dude - 4/10/2005
I didn't know you were obsessed with the Chinitoid. However, I do also miss it. I remember always thinking that when the Chrin wasn't moving, that that meant bad news.

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid Article in the Fusil Oil - 4/12/2005
Dear Tom,

Saw the article in the Fusil oil - interesting, I walked by that thing every day while at RPI, I didn't realize it was gone. I do remember there was a vote one year during Grand Marshall week asking should RPI 'buy' the Chrinitoid?

Reason for the mail - did you get your picture from Zurich? I work for a Swiss company and actually worked there for 5 years. I go through Zurich about 4-5 times per year. If you still need a photo, I can stop by and get it for you.

I also recall during Grand Marshall week they had a 'college bowl' trivia contest between the frats and I was on the SigEp team. One question was asking for the technical name for the Chrinitoid - we did not get it and I don't recall what it was - it was different that what you mentioned in the article. Any ideas?

Bill Leber '80
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoi -- a 1980s photo - 5/28/2005
Googlel says you each have a website or RPI/Chrinitoid related story, so you may be interested in checking this out.

I was tripping down memory lane and dug out some photos from RPI.
Here is a fairly
good one of the Chrinitord I took graduation weekend 1986. Okay, it was taken with one of those cheap ass Kodak Disc cameras, but hey there aren't may photos of it.

Link away!

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
<no subject> 6/23/2005
Tom -

I'm a RPI grad (class of '79) who was also intrigued by the Chrinitoid. I'm currently in negotiations with a local artist to make a "mini" Chrinitoid - I'm thinking of it as an posthumous "Ode to Rickey" kinetic sculpture.

Current sizing and materials:

panels: 4' long, 18" wide and 1.5" or 2" deep. axis of rotation is about 1'
from short end/3' from long end

pole: 12' tall with axis of rotation connected at 11' (panels would hang down to 8' at lowest point)

pole and panels to be steel with copper colored stain. Foundation would be a poured in place caisson with a 4 bolt steel anchor, engineered for the wind loading in my area.

Your World-Up simulation has been critical to me in getting folks to understand how the sculpture should perform in the wind (thank you!).

Unfortunately, the cost estimate is a bit high, but could be lowed per unit if two were made.

Do you know anyone that might be interested in buying a mini-Chrinitoid for their front lawn? The sculpture would likely be in the thousands, but likely less than $7,000.

Sounds like you live in "the city" and wouldn't have space for a mini-chrini, but I thought you might know someone who wants one.

Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid in Zurich - 8/10/2005


I am sure you have been getting a flood of emails about the Chrinitoid since the article last year - here is one more. I graduated in '86, so I too suffered the loss in '84.

I just found out that I need to go to Germany in November and I will probably swing a side trip to Zurich for a day on the way back. I am pretty sure I can find it based on the information on your website and from the tourism site. I will send you a few pictures if you want, unless you have already been inundated with them.

Thanks for the work you put into finding it and for letting the rest of us know.

--Jim Lavelle
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
RE: Chrinitoid in Zurich - 8/25/2005

I think I may have scored my first picture without moving from my desk. I searched on "satellite pictures Zurich" (google) and the first entry was a news site that showed an overhead picture of most of the city. The first picture you see is a low resolution "web" picture, but if you click on the picture you will download a 5.5 meg, full resolution version.

I have attached a small clip from that picture from the bend in the canal where your intel says the Chrinitoid should be. It is possible that what you see in the image is the Chrinitoid, but I can't be sure. (If you "walk across the bridge" from upper right to lower left, as soon as you get to the near side of the canal I think the sculpture is directly to your virtual right, or "above" the cross walk marks.) I see one shiny rectangle and one duller one parallel to it. Of course it could also be a house, but some of the other detail looks like walkway as opposed to a roof, etc.

When I go in November I will confirm the exact location. If this satellite picture really does show it I think it would be cool to put the word out or link a copy on your website. I would wait for confirmation just in case.

Now I can't wait for November.

-Jim Lavelle
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
RE: Chrinitoid in Zurich - 11/15/2005

I got back from my trip to Europe - I saw the Chrinitoid on Saturday the 5th of Nov. I was concerned on my way into Zurich that morning because the weather reports were calling for rain, but luckily there was no water actually falling from the sky all day. It was pretty overcast, though.

I got to the bank location about mid-afternoon and the sun was just poking through some clouds so I was able to shoot off a couple rolls of film. I did not bring my digital camera, so I will have to have the film developed and scan some shots for you.

A couple of impressions on seeing it there: the setting does not really do it justice. The tall building makes it look smaller than I remember it being, and in general the space is cluttered with a canal walkway, bridge, and a restaurant on the ground floor that has tables out in the courtyard. I kept feeling that I could not get back far enough to frame a proper picture, and the backgrounds in various directions were a bit distracting. The other thing I noticed in an hour and a half of loitering was that the range of motion is severely limited. The panels never got above about 60 degrees from down, and the twisting motion was very slow also. It was almost like it was telling me that it felt 21 years older.

I'm going to try to write up my visit in an entertaining fashion (hopefully), maybe you would want to post it on your website if you thought it worthy. I will get some pictures off to you as well, though I'm not sure there will be anything special given the lighting and setting. It was definitely worth the trip, I just wish I had better conditions. I wonder how many people would be interested in a weekend pilgrimage to see it - chartered flight, two nights hotel, rent out the restaurant next door for a party, etc.? I should work up a price and float the concept somehow.

Thanks for all the info, it was quite easy to find. Talk to you -- Jim
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 7/25/2006

Thanks for your 2004 article "In Search of the Chrinitoid". Yes, I'm only getting to filing away some articles that I've been collecting over time.

Only after looking at your website did I realize that you were that Tom Payne. During the first year of Nvidia, we worked with Eric (and Pat) on doing some VR demo (string quartet) for us. Then you went on to 3DLabs and the rest is history...

While at RPI I did a two semester independent study project with Henry Scarton (he and his wife just visited us in CA a few weeks ago) to develop the dynamic equations for the Chrinitoid. I wanted to do it to just get access to RPI's new vector graphics computer system. It took us a semester to come up with the equations and another semester to create the graphics program to display the simulation; the hidden line removal was the hardest part. I've still got the equations and programs in the attic somewhere.

If you ever hear of the Chrinitoid going up for sale, let me know, I'll make sure it finds its way back "home".

Curtis '82
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
George Rickey - 10/15/2006
My son is a sophmore at RPI, and we were there for parents' weekend. He showed me the Rickey piece that he and his friends call The Tree of Death. I immediately recognized its similarity to a sculpture in front of Middlebury College's old art museum, which has hypnotized me for years. You can view it on the college's web page. I was excited to learn that Rickey taught at RPI. Did you also know that another of his works is on the wall outside the RPI library? It looks like two clock hands moving randomly with the wind. There was no attribution nearby, so I do not know the title. Everyone else viewing the piece decided it was powered by a motor inside the building. Great work in tracking down the missing RPI piece!
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 1/3/2007
I took art from Rickey about 1962 at RPI and helped him with technical details of his kinetic sculpture. His idea of free movement of his wands was sharpened cuphooks which ate themselves up, so I suggested that knife edges or roller bearings, while limiting degrees of rotation, could be used in groups to give all angles of rotation and would be much more reliable. Having tossed him my ideas, I neglected to continue to stay in contact to see how his work progressed.

Returning to RPI for the first time in 1984 for a 20th reunion, I enjoyed the Chrinitoid in front of the Greene Bldg for the first and last time. I spent most of my reunion talking up the purchase of the sculpture with Tom Phelan, my old classmate Dave Haviland and Dick Folsom. Mrs. Folsom was as ever a grand person.

The result was that the contact group I set up with new alums evaporated immediately. The other class meetings I attended just to talk up the idea gave me the idea that the alums and the institute were altogether concerned with spending money on the physical plant and the academic programs with no concern for the intellectual or creative side of humanity. I really thought Tom Phelan would have understood the idea.
Apparently the sculpture disappeared that same summer.

Many of my other interests at RPI fell on similarly bad ground and it has taken nearly fifty years for a very few of them to sprout in new windows of opportunity, quite oblivious of my early efforts.

It is good to see occasional items like your article in the magazine.

I have thought of creating a near replica of that sculpture somewhere I could enjoy seeing it, as the astonishing power of scale was so much more effective than any of the smaller Rickeys. A smaller pair of gyratory rectangular frames is installed at the Peoria Airport near here, and I try to arrive earlier than necessary for flights in order to enjoy it, though the Chrinitoid idea grates harshly in my little brain all the while.

Your pages have some broken links, and can I suggest you give a link to my Mochon page on firedragon? Rickey's writings on Mochon are quite brilliant in their clarity and insights. I have attempted to bring in other Mochon offerings to my web page from other casual collectors, and cannot understand why in this Google age this art would still be allowed to languish unseen. Although Mochon's lettering style is derivative of many architects' lettering, it is in itself so unique and full of character that I have spent some time trying to make a type face of it, with so poor results that I think it would be worth it to have it done professionally.

Sorry, no recent photos of my mug are visible on my pages, but there are some from 1967 and a really funny one from about 1976 which should entertain. They bear slight resemblance to the geezer who stares at me through the mirror as I shave.

Thanks for your thoughtfulness and compulsion in putting this out there for us needy searchers.


Karl A. Petersen
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
The Chinitoid - 3/15/2007
You may be interested in the following URL:,+ch&layer=&ie=UTF8&z=19&ll=47.370011,8.53447&spn=0.000816,0.002765&t=k&om=1

It the satellite version of a Google map of Zurich, Switzerland.

The blue canal is the Schanzengraben: the remnants of an old moat, now a pleasant sub-surface downtown promenade. Much like the San Antonio Riverwalk, without the souvenir shops and chain restaurants.

The rainbow-hued octagonal building (a photographic artifact) is an office building holding the Schanzengraben branch of UBS. Right in the middle of the shadow of the building, in the center of the image, you can make out a pale vertical "bow-tie". The Chrinitoid. You can use Google Earth to zoom in for a closer look, but they use the same image, so the resolution is no better. You can zoom out to get an idea of where the Chrinitoid is in respect to the rest of Zurich

I saw your article in the RPI alumni magazine. My work takes me to Switzerland occasionally and last June I had a free Sunday, so using the clues from your web site, I decided to find it. I walked down along the Schanzengraben from the train station because it looked like it would be a nice walk, even if I couldn't find the Chrinitoid. About halfway along, there it was. It's planted in a small brick-surrounded mound of earth in the plaza of the office building, alongside the street that crosses the bridge. There is a cafe in the building. On a non-Sunday, you could sit at one of the tables in the two rows you can see just south-west of the sculpture, with a beverage of your choice, watching it move.

I could not find any identifying information at the site. No mention of its name nor of George Rickey.

I had a camera with me in Switzerland but on the day I forgot and left it in my hotel in Bern so this is the only picture of it I have to show you.

-Mike Vosbury, '61, '68, '73
Posted on 06 Apr 2007 by tom
Chrinitoid - 13 Jan 2008
I went back to campus and saw that there was no Chrinitoid. The Chrinitiod was a vital symbol of RPI.

We need to get it back. Its like going to DC and not seeing the Washington Memorial. Somebody screwed up bad by letting it go.


Surely we can somehow organize to get it back.

John DellaMorte

RPI Class 85,86.
Posted on 13 Jan 2008 by tom
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Other Rickey: Here are some other Rickey sculptures.

Note: This webpage replaces the first and second versions of the "In Search of the Chrinitoid" site.