DisCon III Hugo Base by Sebastian Martorana

Fans appreciate a good story and sculptor Sebastian Martorana held the Opening Ceremonies audience’s rapt attention as he traced the history of the marble used in creating the DisCon III Hugo Award bases.

Martorana, a Baltimore artist, made the bases from the same material as much of his best-known work, salvaged marble from the Beaver Dam Quarry originally used in local buildings. The same kind of stone was used in the construction of the Washington Monument in DC. He can only acquire this stone through salvage because the quarry has been under water since it flooded in the 1930s.

At Opening Ceremonies he showed the selection, cutting, edging and finishing of the marble cubes, and noted, “I was incredibly lucky to be able to work with the team at Hilgartner Natural Stone to make this project happen.”

A sample base with Hugo rocket was displayed on the podium. Afterwards, Rich Lynch was able to take the above close-up photo, which has been color corrected to compensate for the yellowish ambient light. (Olav Rokne has also tweeted a photo.)

6 thoughts on “DisCon III Hugo Base by Sebastian Martorana

  1. Wow.
    Check out the portfolio on the artist’s site.
    He’s made some really nifty & beautiful work.

  2. When I saw it, I thought what a simple base. And then you find out where the stone comes from. Excellent. I wonder if the Tribune Building is made out of that stuff. Beautiful building short walk from the convention hotel in Chicago.

  3. This is an exceptionally cool source of marble for the base but I better not visit the Washington Monument and find small squares cut out of the sides.

  4. It would look terrible to take squares out of the sides. I think the whole monument is three inches shorter now. Hardly noticeable.

  5. I’m surprised nobody noticed when the Monument was tilted over so they could cut a slice off the bottom.

  6. The concourse area of the convention was not all that well lit, especially along the walls where stuff like the sample Hugo was sited. What light there was caused yellow overtones in photos. This unfortunately made the rocket look like it was gold plated like the ones in 2003 and 1992, as Olav’s photo would seem to indicate. But it’s not, and Mike’s color correction to my photo, while still a little bit gold tinted, is pretty close to what you’d see if you were standing net to it.

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