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Press Release
Gary Sczer¬baniewicz’s collection “The Great Deep” is inspired by his residency at the Sanford Underground Research Facility


LEAD, SD— In the spring of 2022, artist Gary Sczerbaniewicz began his residency at Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) by touring the facility and speaking with scientists about their research. The culmination of his residency is “The Great Deep,” a collection inspired by the world-leading science taking place nearly a mile underground at SURF. 

Join us for an artist talk and exhibit reception featuring the work of Sczerbaniewicz on Friday, October 14, from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at Black Hills State University. Sczerbaniewicz will give an artist talk at Club Buzz in the David B. Miller Yellow Jacket Student Union, followed by an exhibit reception in the Ruddell Gallery. This event is free and open to the public.

Sczerbaniewicz, a celebrated artist based in the Cincinnati, Ohio/Northern Kentucky area, borrows techniques from architecture, installation, sculpture and theatrical stagecraft to create full-sized structures into which the viewer is invited to physically enter and explore. His work explores architectural spaces that evoke a sense of psychological unease, what he refers to as “the architectural uncanny.”

During his residency at SURF, Sczerbaniewicz continued to return to the theme of the “sublime.” “It's that sense that hits us when we look into the night sky and realize the vastness of the universe in comparison to our human scale,” Sczerbaniewicz said. “The collection explores the sublime happening in austere spaces—the science unfolding within the history and the original architecture of the site.”

“‘The Great Deep’ is a literal evaluation of the space where science is happening, but the name also evokes that sense of the symbolic deep—the deep of endless time of the universe, the deep of one's imagination, the deep of grasping at the unknowable,” Sczerbaniewicz said.

The SURF AiR program invites artists to create work inspired by SURF’s unique science, location and history. SURF is the deepest underground labora­tory in the United States, reaching nearly a mile below the surface. It houses experiments in physics, biology, geology, and engineering.

“The SURF Artist-in-Residence Program gives artists in any field a unique opportunity to explore SURF’s rich history, fascinating infrastructure and world-class science,” said Gina Gibson, coordinator of the SURF Artist-in-Residence (AiR) program. “We encourage the public to attend this exhibit and see the artwork inspired by SURF.”

The exhibit will run from October 14 through December 9. Gallery hours are Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The gallery is closed during BHSU breaks and official holidays.

Sanford Underground Research Facility is operated by the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority (SDSTA) with funding from the Department of Energy’s Office of Science. Our mission is to advance world class science and inspire learning across generations. Visit SURF at

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Constance Walter
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