Statue of Responsibility to be dedicated at UVU
Just over 150 years ago, the idea of a gift to America to celebrate her liberty was birthed in France. That idea became what we now call the Statue of Liberty. Just imagine for a minute what it would have been like to have been there for the dedication on Oct. 28, 1886. I would have likely been one of the women in the boats in the harbor protesting that women were not allowed. In contrast, a woman (Dr. Nancy O’Reilly) is the chairman of the board for the Statue of Responsibility. We now have the opportunity to be present for the dedication of such a piece of history.
Utah Valley University will dedicate artist Gary Lee Price’s 15-foot prototype of the Statue of Responsibility on April 15 at noon at the east entrance of the Losee Center on the UVU campus. The Statue of Responsibility is Viktor Frankl’s idea from his book “Man’s Search for Meaning” wherein he stated that, “The Statue of Liberty must be book-ended by a Statue of Responsibility, less we lose our freedoms.” Local sculptor Gary Lee Price is the designated sculptor for this historical project. Eventually, Price and the Statue of Responsibility Foundation hope to erect a $300 million, 300-foottall stainless steel version of the statue somewhere on the West Coast as a bookend national monument to the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast.
Price was commissioned in 1997 to design the statue, choosing two hands each gripping the forearm of the other as the symbol. The artist conducted all of the pre-casting work at UVU in 2012 on the 15-foot clay version of the statue. Once the mold of his hands-clasping-hands statue was completed, Price took it back to his foundry and cast a permanent statue. UVU President Matthew S. Holland, familiar with Frankl’s book and philosophy that liberty and responsibility are both components of freedom, was receptive from the very beginning to the idea of Price working openly on the statue on UVU’s campus. Price is a respected artist worldwide, and he knew students would benefit by seeing him work from the ground up on an art piece that might eventually become part of national history.
On April 15 at 9:30 a.m., there will also be a FREE screening of the award-winning documentary “Viktor and I.” This will be held in the Ragan Theater on the UVU campus. The film’s producer, Alex Vesely (Viktor Frankl’s grandson), will be there to meet the public and answer questions. The public is invited to attend.
Imagine being able to tell your great-grandchildren that you were present to witness the dedication of the very first Statue of Responsibility! For more information, visit www.statueofresponsibility.com.
A 15-foot version of the Statue of Responsibility will be dedicated on April 15 at Utah Valley University. The public is invited to attend the ceremony.