By Charles Owen Perry
1979, Painted Steel
Commissioned by Segerstrom in 1979, The Ram by Charles O. Perry is a 20-foot-tall, 7-ton, bright yellow abstract steel sculpture displayed in Town Center Park. It’s one of the most prominent and popular works for those walking to and between Garden Tower, the Westin South Coast Plaza, and South Coast Repertory Theatre.

Commissioned by Henry T. Segerstrom, the sculpture in its title and form suggest that Perry was inspired by animal horns, but he has taken the idea dramatically into the realm of abstraction, rising above any reference to nature.

Believing that sculpture must stand on its own merit without need of explanation, Perry’s work is characterized by an elegance of form that masks the mathematical and scientific complexity of its genesis. His sculptures fall into four categories of styles or forms, which he described as “Solid, Topological, Planar, and Ribbed.” Perry worked in various materials but primarily in metals such as aluminum, bronze, steel, and stainless steel. More than 104 sculptures by Perry can be found in various locations in and around California.

The Ram was fabricated in Rome and shipped to Costa Mesa in four pieces where it was assembled on-site in one day.