Headlines (Campus Updates)
Artist Marlene Hilton Moore speaks about Sir Wilfrid Laurier statue progress
Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing
A bronze statue of a youthful Sir Wilfrid Laurier seated on a granite bench was commissioned for Laurier’s Waterloo campus to celebrate the university’s 100th anniversary.
“I chose to do a young Laurier because what is the point of putting an old Laurier into a university setting?” said statue artist Marlene Hilton Moore. “Everybody is young and vigorous and excited about their future. That was the point Laurier was at – he was poised for his future.
“It was an opportunity to say we too can go wherever we want.”
At a site visit for the statue in April, Hilton Moore showed her progress sculpting Laurier’s head in clay. For the body, she cast a model in authentic clothing from the period to achieve the most natural-looking pose possible.
Hilton Moore modified the statue slightly from the original design. Previously, Laurier sat with his legs crossed, but when the position was assumed by Hilton Moore’s 6’3” model (Laurier was 6’2”), she noticed his foot stuck out too far.
“It was an instant tripping hazard, begging for trouble – I just had to look at it to know,” she said. “To tuck it all in was unnatural, so we just chose a different position of the legs.”
Now that the statue’s head and body have been set, she will begin preparing them for the process that will cast them in bronze.
“I have found Laurier. That's really the bottom line for me,” she said. “I have found him in the portrait and in the body. He lives for me when I look at him.
“I want people to fall in love with him because he is just so real.”
To see the statue’s progress and hear additional remarks from Hilton Moore, watch an interview with the artist on Laurier’s YouTube channel.
Wilfrid Laurier University has also launched a fundraising campaign for the statue. To find out how you can help establish a landmark on Laurier’s Waterloo campus, visit www.laurier100.ca/statue. Donations of $100 or more will be commemorated in a permanent list of donors located near the statue.
The Wilfrid Laurier University Alumni Association will also match, dollar for dollar, donations to the statue up to a total of $10,000.
The Sir Wilfrid Laurier statue will be unveiled in October 2011 to mark the institution’s 100th anniversary. It will be located in the amphitheatre area on Laurier’s Waterloo Campus.