Today, Mayor Rick Maloney and members of Council joined the Hammond family to unveil a memorial sculpture at the Black Bridge with artist, Hilary Clark Cole. This sculpture was donated to the Town by residents Kate and Kent Hammond in memory of their son, Miles, who passed away in February 2021 after a battle with cancer just after his first birthday.
“We are so grateful to the many people who came together to make this beautiful piece possible,” said Kate and Kent Hammond. “For our family, this sculpture is another way to celebrate Miles’ short life and his spirit of grit and strength. We hope that it brings community members a place of peace and remembrance for many years to come.”
The memorial sculpture is a welded steel tree that stands 6.5 feet tall and is located at the Black Bridge on Matthiasville Road. This location provides a quiet space of reflection for the Hammond family and is a beautiful reminder of how precious life is to all who visit and read about the meaning behind the piece.
Hilary Clark Cole is a local Muskoka sculptor, working mainly in hand built welded steel artwork and cast limited edition bronze. Her metal sculptures range in size and often incorporates copper or brass. As an artist, Cole has produced a large body of one-of-a-kind metal sculptures that can be found in private collections and public installations.
“It was a pleasure to be selected by Kate and Kent Hammond to create this memorial sculpture,” said Clark Cole. “The Hammond family has so graciously shared Miles’ life and loss with the community. I am honoured to have had the opportunity to create the first piece of public art accessioned through the Town’s Public Art Advisory Committee.”
This is the first piece of public art accessioned by the Town since the creation of the Public Art Advisory Committee in 2020. The goal of this committee is to provide support, guidance and strategic recommendations to Council related to the accession and location of public art in the community, in both public and private spaces. Council approved a Public Art Policy in 2020 to direct the integration of artwork in Bracebridge, increase livability and artistic richness in town, and provide more opportunities for art awareness, appreciation and accessibility.
“Thank you to the Hammond family for making this very special contribution to the Town’s public art collection and to Hilary Clark Cole for bringing it to life,” said Mayor Rick Maloney. “The Town of Bracebridge is committed to community wellness and vitality, and public art is something that brings people together and starts conversations. While Miles’ time with us was short, this beautiful tree sculpture will help keep his memory alive and hopefully spark joy for all who see it.”
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