𝙁𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙙𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 𝙜𝙧𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙫𝙞𝙙𝙚𝙨 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙛𝙞𝙧𝙨𝙩 𝙨𝙘𝙪𝙡𝙥𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙣 𝙥𝙖𝙧𝙠
The mission of the park is contained in its name ~ Sankofa.
“It means to go back and get the things in history that have given us strength so that we have them for the present and future,” said Rachel Conn, executive director of the Hamilton Hill Arts Center, shown above. “People crossing into this park retrieve the knowledge of their ancestors.” Below is one of four mosaic benches installed in the park.
Several years in the making, the new Sankofa Sculpture Park celebrates the art and culture of the African diaspora, while also expanding the footprint of the Schenectady-based Hamilton Hill Arts Center.
The centerpiece of the park is a stunning metal sculpture of Ogun, the West African god of blacksmithing, whom Conn described
as “the foundation of civilization.” Created by well-known artist Jerome Meadows, Ogun towers over a pile of metal that includes brake rotors and railroad spikes – “any rusty metal we could find,” Conn explained.
This art and the park infrastructure was created thanks to a $38,500 grant from The Schenectady Foundation’s Thriving Neighborhoods Challenge program.
The Schenectady Street entrance to the park, shown below, features a sculpture of the guardian of the crossroads and the sidewalk, painted by local artist Bianca Dilella, signifies the slave ships crossing the ocean.
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