Friday, May 23, 2014

Memorial Day has its beginnings at the end of our American Civil War.

Soldiers and Sailors, 1877
Boston Common / Lafayette Mall On Flagstaff Hill Martin Milmore, Sculptor
Bronze / Granite

Soaring and traditionally monumental for a war memorial, Martin Milmore’s monument marks the center of historic Boston Common.

Martin Milmore’s success with the Roxbury monument led to his doing the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument atop Flagstaff Hill on Boston Common, begun in 1871 and completed in 1877. Four statues representing Peace, the Sailor, The Muse of History, and the Soldier, stand at the base of a tall column surmounted by a figure of Liberty. Between the projections on which the statues stand are four bronze reliefs depicting the departure of forces for the war, the Battle of Fort Sumter, the work of the Boston Sanitary Commission, and the return from the war. At the foot of the column stand allegorical figures in high relief representing the
sections of the country, the North, South, East, and West. The
architectural sense of the design is admirable. The presence of
this collective monument did not, however, spare Boston a num-
ber of individual memorials of the Civil War. 

"Boston Bronze and Stone Speak To Us" can be purchased at the following locations: Faneuil Hall Book Store, Old North Church Gift Store, Bestsellers Bookstore Cafe, USS Constitution Museum Gift Sore, Museum Of Science Gift Store,, Barnes & Noble Book Stores. 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

I want to share with you, this most kind letter received from Diane Gallagher ; teacher at the Diamond Middle School.

What never ceases to amaze me is the broad spectrum of Americans who can relate to"Boston Bronze and Stone Speak To Us"both young and old alike.

Hello Joe!

Yesterday was such a perfect presentation to our students on Boston's sculptures.  You had the attention of over 90  seventh graders
 who learned more in that hour than we could have taught them in a week.  Your power point and accompanying stories behind each
sculpture brought the bronze and stone to life.  Thank you, Joe, from all of us here at Diamond Middle School, for your passion in helping us 
see our fair city and her public art with new eyes. Now when we venture into Boston on our walking field trip next week with  your wonderful book to guide us and our sketch books in hand, we are sure to have a most memorable day!

It is no small feat, Joe, that you could keep rapt attention of almost 100 thirteen year old children on a warm Friday afternoon.  It was the end of a long week yet they held onto your every word and answered all of your questions thoughtfully.  You complimented their answers and made them all feel so good about their knowledge and the inferences they drew about the art.  

Again, thank you for coming to Lexington to teach our children and inspire us all.

Most sincerely --

Diane Gallagher

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Go Bruins from "Boston Bronze and Stone Speak To Us"

Let's do it again Bruins!

Make Way for Ducklings ( 1987 )
Boston Public Gardens Nancy Schön, Sculptor Bronze / Stone

This Sculpture has been placed here as a tribute to Robert McCloskey whose story “Make Way for Ducklings” has made the Boston Public Garden familiar to children through out the world. (1987)
Taken from the Bronze

Make Way for Ducklings, a children’s book written by Robert McCloskey in 1941, won the Caldecott Medal (an award given annually for outstanding juvenile literature) in 1942. It quickly became a classic, going through seventeen printings and selling more than 700,000 copies. With his own drawings, McCloskey relates the tale of a pair of mallard ducks looking for a nesting site in Boston. They find the perfect place on an island in the Charles River Basin, but they remember the peanuts fed them by visitors to the Public Garden. When the ducklings are old enough, Mrs. Mallard and her progeny take a stroll up sidewalks and through traffic. One of Boston’s newer traditions is a children’s parade retracing the ducklings’ route on Duckling Day (Mothers Day).

Requests for replicas in other cities have been turned down by the sculptor because ‘it’s a Boston story.’ She made exception when Russian First Lady Raisa Gorbachev asked her American counterpart Barbara Bush for a duplicate for Moscow; in 1991 a duck family was installed in Gorky Park.
Dedicated in the 150th anniversary year of the Public Garden, the sculpture is considered a tribute to McCloskey, whose drawings the sculptor followed closely. Given to the City of Boston by Friends of the Public Garden.

Nancy Schön (born 1928) is a renowned sculptor of public art displayed internationally. Nancy prides herself in having work that is totally interactive. Her sculptures are available for people to touch, sit on, hug and interact with every day of the year, day or night.

Another major work by Nancy Schön’s besides Make Way for Ducklings is The Tortoise and Hare, which is a meta- phor for the Boston Marathon and is located at the finish line in Copley Square.
As Nancy creates a work of art, her research is a quest for knowledge and of understanding issues and of learning, including her philosophy of “reflection in action”. “We learn so much from our inquiry but as my husband said, ‘we know more than we can say’ and I would always say back to him that I think our unconscious is brilliant!”

"Boston Bronze and Stone Speak To Us" can be purchased at the following locations: Faneuil Hall Book Store, Old North Church Gift Store, Bestsellers Bookstore Cafe, USS Constitution Museum Gift Sore, Museum Of Science Gift Store,, Barnes & Noble Book Stores.