Click here to view a slide show of the Art Stroll Sculptures.
Barre: The Sculpture City
Barre, Vermont is one of two cities in New England that has the distinction of being shaped by the visual arts: via resource extraction, manufacturing and stone sculpture. Barre has a world-wide reputation for its high quality carving granite and its resident population of stone carvers.
Over the years, Barre has celebrated its talents in the visual arts via three major “gateway” sculptures to the city: the Robert Burns Monument; Youth Triumphant; and the Italian-American Monument. (See map.)
More recently, a group of human-scale sculptures have been added to the streetscape of Barre through two programs supported by the Charles Semprebon Fund: the Stone Sculpture Legacy Program and the Functional Art Bike Rack Program, begun in 2011. (More sculptures will be added to the streetscape; for information, contact project manager Sue Higby at [email@example.com])
These granite sculptures, large and small, and the sculptural bike racks are tangible ways to familiarize residents and visitors with the skilled artisans in our region.
Download a printable map here or follow along with the descriptions below.
1. Italian-American Stonecutter
North Main Street & Maple Avenue (Dente Park)
This monument, dedicated to Carlo Abate who established the first art school in Barre, honors the community’s talented artists and Italian heritage. It was designed by Elmo Peduzzi, and sculpted by Philip Paini from a model created by Giuliano Cecchinelli. (Italian-American Memorial, Inc., 1985)
2. Coffee Break
219 North Main Street (Barre City Place)
Designed and carved by Heather M. Ritchie, this 4-piece granite installation honors the blue collar work ethic in Barre and depicts tools and other symbols of the trade. For example, there is a life sized, carved newspaper hat that sculptors from Cararra, Italy, made from Italian newspapers to keep granite dust from their hair and to stay warm. (Charles Semprebon Fund, 2014)
3. Unzipping the Earth
201 North Main Street (Granite Zipper Pocket Park)
An oversized stone zipper serves as the artistic focal point for the Granite Zipper Pocket Park, located between Studio Place Arts (SPA) and Barre City Place. Designed and carved by Chris Miller, the zipper opens to a lush perennial garden; granite blocks provide informal seating nearby. (Studio Place Arts & DEW Construction, 2014)
4A. Daddy’s Chair
201 North Main Street (Studio Place Arts)
A life-sized, granite easy chair designed and carved by Giuliano Cecchinelli, II, for display in the “temporary sculpture park” at a previous vacant lot at Depot Square. Cecchinelli encourages people to sit in and enjoy the chair. (Courtesy of the artist, 2011)
4B. Resolution of Idea #2
201 North Main Street (Studio Place Arts)
This 7 foot tall welded steel and granite sculpture by John Matusz is currently on display as part of SPA's annual Rock Solid Exhibit (through November 3rd).
5. Gargoyle Bike Rack
Near 168 North Main Street (by Coins & Hobbies)
Two granite gargoyles are engaged in a perpetual tug-of-war in this functional art bike rack designed and carved by Chris Miller. (Charles Semprebon Fund, 2014)
6. Colonel Isaac Barré
North Main Street & Prospect Street (City Hall)
Col. Isaac Barré (1726–1802), was awarded a seat in Parliament for his military services in the British army, was a renowned orator, and advocated for the American colonists; he is the man for whom our city is named. This portrait was designed and carved by Giuliano Cecchinelli. (Charles Semprebon Fund, 2014)
7. Youth Triumphant
Washington Street & South Main Street (City Hall Park)
This monument depicts a young warrior pleading for world peace. Carved by Gino Enrico Tosi, Enrico Mori and John Delmonte from a model created by New York sculptor C. Paul Jennewein. Jennewein’s design was selected from a national competition to commemorate the youth who fought in WWI; his artistic achievements may be seen around the country.
Whispering Wall — Youth Triumphant is surrounded by a semi-circular exedra with a bench designed by architect John Mead Howells. (Barre Quarries & Manufacturers Association, 1924)
8. Robert Burns
Washington Street & Academy Street (Vermont History Center)
Created to honor the 100th anniversary of the death of the Scottish poet Robert Burns. Burns was carved by Samuel Novelli, and the panels by Elia Corti, based upon models by Scottish sculptors J. Massey Rhind and James B. King. It shows Burns returning from a workday as a ploughman. Three panels are scenes from his poems and one depicts his home.
(Scottish community, 1899)
9. Mr. Pickwick
Washington Street & Elm Street (Aldrich Public Library)
Mr. Pickwick was the main character in The Pickwick Papers, the first of Charles Dickens’ published works. This sculpture was designed and carved by Giuliano Cecchinelli. (Community supporters of the Aldrich Public Library, 2016)
10. Jack-in-the-Box Bike Rack
Washington Street & Jefferson Street (Aldrich Public Library)
The bike rack created by Giuliano Cecchinelli, II, of Barre, features a granite sculpture of an oversized Jack-in-the-Box mechanical toy resting on the ground, perhaps just after the spring pushed the clown upwards from its box. (Charles Semprebon Fund, 2016)
11. Tree of a Kind
22 Keith Avenue & Summer Street (Downstreet Offices/Apts)
This abstracted stand of fir trees made from granite fits together like a jigsaw puzzle and includes benches; it was designed and created by George Kurjanowicz. (Downstreet Housing & Community Development, 2016)
12. Big Wheel Bike Rack
East Parkside Terrace (Charlie’s Playground 2012)
Sculptural bike rack by Heather M. Ritchie that shows a child riding a Big Wheel up a ramp, evoking the carefree, dynamic movements that many children enjoy in their play. (Charles Semprebon Fund, 2016)