Bi-centennial Forged Peace sculpture signifies lasting peace

By Karen Fallon

A sculpture depicting three intertwined muskets used by Canadian, American and First Nation People in the War of 1812 and which features a rose blooming from the end of each gun barrel will stand in the Navy Yard Park, council agreed.

Lena Lazanja, president of the Amherstburg Rotary Club, has worked on the “Forged Peace Sculpture” and bicentennial twinning project with twin sister cities of Put-in-Bay Ohio, and Monroe Michigan.

“In order to commemorate the relationship that we have built and that we are continuing to forge we have decided to come up with something that would be a legacy project,” said Lazanja. .

Each of these sister cities has a Rotary club that is also participating in the project.

Lazanja says the Rotary Club has teamed up with the Amherstburg Chamber of Commerce to help bring the local venture to fruition.

The message indicated by the sculpture, notes Anne Rota, Manager of Tourism and Culture, is that: “Out of war between nations, peace was forged into three beautiful roses as a symbol of friendship.”

The sculpture, which will stand approximately 12ft, will be made of bronze cast from Detroit foundry and will bear an inscription noting the twinning and commitment to friendship and peace between the organizations and the three communities.

Organizers in Put-in-Bay and Monroe, notes Rota, are looking to do something similar in 2013 when their anniversaries take place.

The artist of the sculpture Joseph DeAngelis, a retired professor from School of Visual Arts in Windsor, is donating his time. His acclaimed works include pieces at the Ontario Provincial Government Building, Windsor Public Library, Odette Sculpture Park, International sculpture Symposium in China, galleries in Germany, Italy and the Untied States.

The cost of the local sculpture, to be shared between the  Amherstburg Rotary Club and Chamber of Commerce, is pegged at $9,800 for casting and the bronze material.

Councillor John Sutton says that he is not surprised to see the Amherstburg Rotary Club engaged in a partnership with the chamber and the town in an effort to “kick-off” the 1812 celebrations.

Sutton says he thinks the chosen location of Kings Navy Yard Park is the perfect spot to have the sculpture.

“I think the town and council are very happy to provide that in-kind support,” said Sutton. “When we see such a legacy project like that which doesn’t cost the taxpayers…it really does go to show what they can do when they pull together.”

The proposed date of dedication ceremony of the bi-national project is tagged at June 18, 2012. This date marks the first gunshot fired at River Canard at the start of the War of 1812.


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