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An eye on public art and place

In 1927 Horace A. Moses, Ticonderoga’s most prolific early twentieth century benefactor, gifted to the people of this town its Community Building.  The structure was designed to meet a community need, as well as, to be a very public and visual presence in recognition of Ticonderoga’s historical, industrial and cultural heritage.  To further the building’s position of place a lighted cupola crowns the roof line – a beacon to guide one to the then village’s center of industrial and commercial activity.  It was the eastern entrance “gateway” anchor building  along the village’s east-west main street corridor (Montcalm).

As the Liberty Monument and the Hancock House represented the western “gateway” each building have some similar features.  Both were designed by the same architect in the style of historical colonial and colonial revival.  Each have Weymouth granite exteriors to present a very imposing and solid visual connection between the two entrance buildings.

Community Building – Ticonderoga, NY

In 1921 Mr. Moses’ commissioned Charles Keck to design an outdoor sculpture to represent the history that was made here in Ticonderoga.  Mr. Keck’s  “The Birth of Liberty,” was the product of that commission.  An inspirational bronze monument with a concept that our liberty grew from our wilderness.  Using life sized caricatures represented by the four combatants that fought in this region during the 1600s through to the end of the American Revolution and the formation of the nation:  Native American, French, English and American stand underneath an oversized female “Liberty.”  Since its installation the “Liberty Monument” has been recognized as a magnificent piece of outdoor sculpture. (Subject of a future article)

Liberty Monument by Charles Keck

In the Community Building’s lobby Mr. Moses choose to installed another piece art.  On the lobby’s eastern wall there is a three panel art installation of oil and bronze secured into in a shallow marble bordered niche.  The left and right panels, in oil, are scenes from his boyhood, while the center panel is a profile pose of him in bronze.  Two artists were commissioned to render this piece of work:   W. Granville Smith and Charles G. Keck.

Community Building Main Lobby

Community Building – Art Installation