Point of View

© Point of View, 2006, Bronze Monument Sculpture, Stone, Concrete, 120 x 144 inches, Grand View Scenic Byway and Park, Pittsburgh, PA.

Placed atop Mount Washington, the highest point overlooking the City of Pittsburgh, this larger-than-life-size bronze sculpture depicts the monumental meeting of George Washington and Seneca leader Guyasuta in 1770. Once allies, these men fought against each other in the French and Indian War, only to meet again over council fire along the Ohio River. Washington has a sword, but his hand is positioned in the inside of the sword, not the outside ready to use. Guyasuta has a tomahawk peace pipe with the pipe side up, blade side down. Their weapons are there, but in a position of peace not war. The figures are face-to-face and closer than normal to depict a conversation that shows intensity and a bit of uncomfortableness. George Washington is positioned looking down the Ohio Valley indicating the colonist’s westward push, while Guyasuta has his back towards the Ohio Valley in defiance of the white man’s push into the Ohio Valley.

“POINT OF VIEW is an iconic piece with timeless relevance which truly embodies my ‘Art as Dialogue’ vision statement. Both literally and figuratively, there is quite a lot happening in this piece. POINT OF VIEW memorializes a meeting between two prominent historical figures who fought on opposite sides of the French and Indian War – a worldwide conflict between two superpowers, England and France – and who put their differences aside for the greater good of all. As I created this sculpture, I intentionally wanted both figures to be viewed as equals. Their heads are at the same elevation. They are faced eye-to-eye. Guyasuta sits with his back against the west. Washington keeps his gaze toward that direction in deference to the westward push by colonists. They are listening to each other. They are having civil dialogue and putting their differences aside. That’s the story. That’s the lesson for us all, then and now.”