Ship of Pearl - CODAworx

Ship of Pearl

Client: Cathedral Church of St Paul

Location: Boston , MA, United States

Completion date: 2013

Project Team


Donald Lipski

Project Manager

John Grant

Public Art Services


For the historic Cathedral Church of St Paul, a 200 year old church on the Boston Common, America’s oldest public park, artist Donald Lipski created an iconic work to fill the building’s pediment. The pediment of this building had remained blank and unfinished since its construction over 200 years ago. For this unique location Lipski designed a slice through the shell of the chambered nautilus as a metaphor for spiritual growth. The piece is lit at night by thousands of embedded l.e.d. lights, measures 18′ x 75′ x 1.5′, and is comprised of aluminum and faux stone surface texture.


The Episcopal church also serves Chinese, Muslim, and homeless congregations, and is a place of worship for all people. Lipski strove to find an image that, while spiritual, is non-religious and can serve as a beacon and inspiration for those of any or no faith.