Flowers for Lucy Stone

Lucy StoneThe Boston Women’s Monument is a triad of bronze sculptures by Meredith Bergmann, representing Lucy Stone, Abigail Adams, and Phyllis Wheatley. The monument was roundly panned by Boston art critics when it was installed. There are many awkward things about the group, certainly (for instance, why does Abigail Adams lurk behind an obelisk that reminds me of 2001?) but even on the gray March day in my photograph, there were visitors. Dressed in raincoats and bundled against the chill, they posed with the sculptures–really posed with them, since Lucy, Abigail and Phyllis are at ground level. Someone else–earlier in the day or perhaps the day before–had left a bouquet of orange chrysanthemums in Lucy Stone’s hand. Representational sculpture serves an ancient need, to present us with a real person, and that elicits a physical, visceral response.


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