History of Wholeo, the Stained Glass Dome, Text and Graphics Path

What is it? How did it come to be? Where is it going?
As you read, click on highlighted words or small images to open larger related images. See San Francisco, New York, Berkeley, Forestville, Monte Rio, and onward.

Wholeo, the name of the dome, and all images are Copyright Caroling 1974 All rights reserved

San Francisco, 1967

Wholeo Dome started with a vision quest for the whole self and the desire to be completely immersed in colored light. In San Francisco, I made a scale model design for a colored dome. Eventually, the actual dome turned out quite differently. It could not be confined to the preliminary vision.

To prove the concept, I built a test panel on two foam shells, to the curvature of the hemisphere. These pictures show the panel and the colored light from the panel projected onto a foam shell. Eventually, the panel became part of Wholeo Dome.

New York, 1968

After moving to Staten Island, N.Y., I talked to architects, experimented with plastic frameworks, and read the Whole Earth Catalog and the Domebook 2. I created and built some panels on a light table.

Berkeley, California, 1972

Four years and many paintings, drawings, and 20 glass panels later, I was ready to put up the dome frame. I needed to see the glass in position in natural light. So I headed for California. In Berkeley, I made the aluminum tube frame and put up the NY panels for the first time. At last I was quite sure it could work and it was a wonderful idea.

Forestville, California, 1973

To make the dream come true, I found a site on the sunny side of a canyon near the Russian River in Forestville, Sonoma County on a ranch named "Harmony." There I built a dome ("Bump") to live in while finishing Wholeo Dome. My only utility was cold water with a spigot. The setting fostered the solitude and serenity needed to realize the visions of the search for the whole self. I tuned into the cosmos and channeled that into the stained glass dome.

Monte Rio, California, 1975

Take a look at the geodesic aluminum tube frame skeleton that holds up the skin of leaded glass panels. The next picture shows a single panel perched high against the sky. It is the first one on the dome. Here Wholeo Dome is up on posts away from the mud. Panels are wrapped in one-inch wide lead, put together like a giant lampshade. Wholeo Dome remained open to the public in Monte Rio for six years. Now it is in the Hippie Museum virtual collection and is installed at The Farm School in Tennessee. See also Ideas, environment, roots, and surround.

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This page last modified : 14 February, 2009   back to exhibit Back to exhibit page ~ {Wholeo Dome}