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Diviners by Robert Stackhouse

      Robert Stackhouse was born in Bronxville, NY, on July 31, 1942. He received his BA degree from the University of South Florida, Tampa, in 1965 and his MA degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, in 1967. He specializes in sculpture and painting and has numerous exhibits and one-man shows throughout the United States. The University of Florida maintains an archive that contains copies of all his compositions.
      Florida history, the environment of seagoing vessels, and beached shipwrecks comprise the subject matter in most of Stackhouse's work. Diviners, a 50 × 98-in aquatint, is a classic representation of his work. The keel of a rough-hewn, water-tempered, wind-weathered ship emerges from the fog. Reminiscent of a Viking longboat, only a portion of the vessel is revealed, leaving its origin indistinct. It could also be a craft from the whaling era. One can imagine a hopeful hunter standing just out of sight in the fog, posed with his whaling spear held aloft, and ready to plunge it into an unsuspecting sperm whale. The boat's hull reveals the ingenuity of human invention braving the elements. The close-up of the sun-drenched boards next to the ship also contains a classic element of Stackhouse's style, the A-frame. Diviners is a powerful metaphor for life, an image that calls to the desire for adventure found in every heart. It discloses the lure of the unconquered past and arouses nostalgia. Diviners is located on the east wall of the second floor of the Gonda Building.