Tuesday, August 24, 2010
A couple of months ago, we went to lunch down at the harbor in San Diego. There is a new museum there (new since I moved to NM), on the retired USS Midway aircraft carrier.
Nearby stands this sculpture, a 25' tall recreation of the very famous photograph taken at the end of WWII on the streets of NYC.
I was quite taken by it, and took many photos. It's only recently, after all, that the nurse in the original Aug. 14, 1945 photograph passed away (the sailor was never identified and her identity was unknown until around 1970). There are several other sculpture installations in this park area. One is a bronze statue of Bob Hope, speaking to a group of (bronze) soldiers and veterans. There is a recording of his voice and comedy routine that plays there, and lights on it at night...you feel as though you are really there for one of his many, popular, USO shows..
Anyway. It turns out this statue, known as "Unconditional Surrender", is scheduled to be removed at the end of August. It is on loan from the artist. It is made of foam core with a urethane outer coating, and was never intended to withstand the outdoor weather. There is a movement afoot in San Diego to try to see if there's any way to have this duplicated in bronze, to remain there forever...and of course, as always, there are those who would like to see it go away.
I hope they can find a way to acquire a permanent version of this piece; it is, after all, a scene that still occurs frequently enough in this military town. What more fitting place than this?