Archive for Sculptures
In Washington Square Park last evening, two marble figures of “George Washington” stood quietly in the dark amid rallying cries for political revolution in the November 2016 Elections.
Hermon MacNeil’s statue of “General George Washington” and Alexander Stirling Calder’s Statue of “President Washington” have graced the back of the monument for nearly a century. They immortalize two facets of an American giant who was no stranger to either revolution or politics.
The 124-year-old marble Washington Arch framed a white-haired Bernie Sanders as the Brooklyn-born senator railed on about how politics is “fixed” for the wealthiest 1% of Americans. A reported 27,000 people packed the park on a brisk NYC evening. The event in one of the largest rallies of this campaign.
Senator Sander’s familiar stump speech rang out loud and clear as the Presidential candidate’s raspy-voice pierced the night air. The enthusiasm of “Gotham City” night-life roared from the sign-waving crowd. The event seemed to open another chapter in the life of this historic gathering place of American celebration and demonstration.
Sanders 40 years of independent politics has sounded themes of “income inequality”, “health care rights”, “Wall Street power”, and “corporate greed” to list a few. In recent months he has thundered his message to ever-widening audiences across the United States.
The rally last evening brought Sanders home to his Brooklyn roots and this historic place of American identity and protest.
Whether it brought him any closer to George Washington’s old job has yet to be determined.
The year 2016 marks the sesquicentennial of the birth of Hermon Atkins MacNeil on February 27, 1886.
While we celebrate each February as “MacNeil Month,” this year is extra special as the 150th anniversary of his birth.
Several events during 2016 will acknowledge that here on HermonAtkinsMacNeil.com:
- The newly commissioned 2016 MacNeil Medallion will be available for sale on eBay. CLICK HERE
- Postings will continue to celebrate the life and art of Hermon A. MacNeil.
- Kisimul Castle the home of the MacNeil Chieftans from the 14th century, will be featured.
- The origins of the MacNeil Clan on the Isle of Barra in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides will be visited with photos and history .
- The webmaster’s ongoing travels and activity will be presented as his “Search for Uncle Hermon” continues as a odyssey of retirement.
- Antique “MacNeil Postcards” of some of his sculptures across the U. S. will be presented as features.
- MacNeil’s years in Paris will be revisited with photos of the newly restored Ecole de Beaux Arts where he studied and taught.
- MacNeil’s teachers in Paris will be featured with photos of their sculptures in the Musee d’Orsay in the center of Paris. This museum was built as the railroad station for the Universal Exposition of 1900 in which MacNeil and his contemporary sculptors exhibited and received prizes.
- Our recent Travels to Scotland will be featured with photos and stories.
- Our travels to France this year will be shared.
ALL in ALL, 2016 begins as a banner year for this website. SO stay tuned.
Better yet, SUBSCRIBE by clicking the button.
The “Confederate Defenders of Charleston” sculpture on Battery Point in Charleston Harbor was spray painted again on Friday, July 10th, 2015.
Police were called to White Point Gardens on a report of vandalism of the Confederate statue completed by MacNeil in 1932. The officers were met by a witness who told them he was seated on a bench 100 feet from the monument when he:
… noticed a white male jog by going east on Murray Blvd. from King Street towards East bay. A few moments later the witness noticed the same white male walking around the statue inside the railing surrounding the monument. The witness then heard a “hissing” sound and realized the man was spray painting the statue.
The suspect is described as a white male with pale skin and dark hair, possibly in his 20s to mid 30s, tall and slender. He was wearing a plain black t-shirt, black shorts, a plain black ball cap, and gold rimmed glasses.
The statue was painted with black spray paint. On the front of the statue it read, “THE CAUSE FOR WHICH THEY FOUGHT THE CAUSE OF SLAVERY WAS WRONG.” On the back it read, “TAKE DOWN THIS RACIST STATUE.” [ SOURCE: The Blaze ( http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2015/07/11/charleston-confederate-monument-vandalized-again-this-time-with-obama-quote/ ) ]
The new graffiti is from Obama’s eulogy of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, pastor of Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, one of nine people shot to death in the church last month.
“Removing the flag from this state’s capitol would not be an act of political correctness; it would not be an insult to the valor of Confederate soldiers,” Obama said. “It would simply be an acknowledgment that the cause for which they fought — the cause of slavery — was wrong.”
Since the massacre at the historic black church, a national outcry erupted over the display of the Confederate flag and similar symbols. This week the Confederate flag at the South Carolina state capitol was taken down. [ SOURCE: The Blaze ( http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2015/07/11/charleston-confederate-monument-vandalized-again-this-time-with-obama-quote/ )]
Previously in June, the base of the same monument was covered with red spray-painted graffiti, declaring “Black Lives Matter” and “This is the root of our evil” on the east side.
- Confederate Defenders of Charleston -Part 2 (8)
- Confederate Defenders Statue – White Point Gardens & the Battery (8)
- MacNeil Statue will not attend Secession Gala (8)
Down the street from The Mother Emmanuel AME Church where nine members were massacred this week while worshiping God in prayer and Bible study stands the Confederate Defenders monument sculpted by Hermon MacNeil. The memorial was defaced with spray paint on Sunday.
Hermon A. MacNeil’s only Confederate monument stands on Battery Point on Charleston Harbor facing out to Fort Sumter 3 1/2 miles away where the first shots of the Civil War was fired . The monument was commissioned for this site in 1932 by The United Daughters of the Confederacy. It has stood for 83 years.
MacNeil’s design was chosen by a local monument committee over all other entries. The allegorical piece depicts the Youth of defenders and the Maternal figure of culture. The shield contains the Seal of the State of South Carolina (the first to succeed from the Union).
Succession Gala: For my own comments on a previous Confederate Celebration and remembrance see this post on this website: “MacNeil Statue will not attend Secession Gala” By (http://hermonatkinsmacneil.com/2010/12/12/macneil-statue-will-not-attend-secession-gala/)
It is unlike any other Civil War Monuments that Hermon MacNeil created. SEE the following links:
- Whitinsville, Massachusetts ( 1905 Monument to Soldiers & Sailors of the Civil War~ Whitinsville, Massachusetts );
- Albany, NY ( 1912 Soldiers and Sailors Monument, Albany,NY );
- Philadelphia Pennsylvania ( 1927 Civil War Soldiers and Sailors Monument ~ Philadelphia, PA );
A June 21st report by Melissa Boughton of The Post and Courrier gives the following details:
The damage was reported to police dispatchers just after 12:30 p.m. The statue was covered up by residents who wrapped a large tarp around it about 1:30 p.m.
Two signs were placed on the tarp after the graffiti was covered up. One said, “All lives matter #charlestonunited,” and the other said, “Take down racist statues.”
The incident occurred in the wake of the fatal shooting Wednesday of nine black people inside Emanuel AME Church in what police say was an attack by a white supremacist. The church held its first service since the shootings on Sunday.
The attack has led to a nationwide call for South Carolina to remove the Confederate battle flag from the Statehouse grounds. At least 1,000 people gathered Saturday in Columbia to call for the flag to be taken down. Numerous petitions also call for the flag’s removal. ( http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20150621/PC16/150629854/confederate-monument-a-focus-of-debate-after-graffiti-appears )
FOR MORE HISTORY on this work by HERMON MACNEIL see the following:
Hermon MacNeil’s “Chief of the Multnomah” was cast in full size and half size versions. This one was Discovered by a reader of this website several years ago in Vernon, New Jersey. Here was a brief note that was sent to the website:
I’ve been noticing a magnificent piece of the scultpture for the past few years, located in Vernon N.J. at the Minerals Spa and Resort. After closer examination I discovered it is Chief Multnomah with his arms crossed, standing on tip toes looking outward. “The coming of the white man” is the title usually ascribed to this work, but in this case the chief stands alone without his scout or assistant as pictured on your web-site. It is signed simply, H.A. Macneil S.C. 04. Just thought it was a variation of the piece that you might find interesting.I’m not really sure how long its been there, because I’m relatively new to the area. Being a sculptor myself and one that is particularly fond on the late 19th cent/early 20th cent period, with the likes of Rodin, Bayre, Dega, etc. Macneil certainly is a strong and salutory member of that period. Regards, D. Moldoff.
My response was as follows:
Dear D. L. Moldoff,
Thanks for noticing sculpture around you and sharing the information. The ‘Chief Multnomah’ is the larger Half of H. A. MacNeil’s “The Coming of the White Man.” (COTWM). While the COTWM piece is only at the Washington Park in Portland, OR, where it was commissioned for that city. The original plaster sculpture model is in the Poppenhusen Institute in Queens, NYC, just blocks from MacNeil’s studio.
(Click HERE ) for link to my archives of seven post on Chief of the Mulnomah.)
There are multiple castings of this single piece, the “Chief Multnomah”, possibly over 20 in total. I believe there are at lease two groupings of 12 casts and 9 casts of this statue. I have found information and location on three other ‘Multnomah’s. Plus there are many smaller (half-scale) casts of this sculpture.
These are the related entries for this story. For MORE see these previous posts:
Here at the HermonAtkinsMacNeil.com website we celebrate every February as
in honor of the birth of
Hermon Atkins MacNeil
February 27th, 1866.
This is the first of several postings that will celebrate this theme. Hermon’s older cousin, Tom Henry MacNeil (my grandfather), was born on February 29th, 1860. So February is MacNeil Month in several ways.
Here is a recent video of the Sun Vow to start off our month of celebration: