If you’ve visited the city recently, you may have noticed some friendly faces in the form of sculptures all around Downtown Trenton. Many of us have had to take a second glance as we pass by these true-to-life works of art, which blend in beautifully with the hustle and bustle of city life. On a sunny Friday morning, visitors from near and far were invited to Downtown Trenton to explore the incredible world of Seward Johnson’s “Celebrating the Ordinary.” These sculptures, courtesy of the Trenton Downtown Association, were sourced from the world-renowned Seward Johnson Atelier. As eager crowds gathered to hear more about the creations, it was immediately evident that guests were in for a memorable morning in the Capital City.
Per the late Seward Johnson, “I use my art to convince you of something that isn’t real. You laugh at yourself because you were taken in, and in that change of your perception, you become vulnerable to the piece and intimate with it in a certain way.” It is precisely this intimacy and engagement that makes Johnson’s work so compelling. If you’ve had the opportunity to visit Grounds For Sculpture or the surrounding neighborhood, you may have been lucky enough to enjoy some of his work in the past. If not, then be certain to pass through Downtown Trenton while this world-renowned work is still on display.
Starting at Warren Street Plaza, the tour took Trentonians and visitors through corners of the Capital City streetscape. You can find these sculptures all over town, from the steps of City Hall to the colorful corners of South Warren St. and everywhere in between. A great way to get in your steps and learn more about art history along the way, there’s no doubt this tour gave attendees a new appreciation for both these creations and the community itself.
Throughout the morning, the Seward Johnson Atelier tour guides provided background on the inspiration and process behind each piece. As tour guide Joanne Sutera explained, Seward was a Johnson & Johnson estate member. However, he was unable to work for the family business as he was dyslexic and struggled with the nature of the work. Instead, he dedicated his life to sculptures, bringing joy to thousands each year. Although he did not profit much from his art during his lifetime, the wonder and delight his creations brought others was priceless. Until his passing in 2020, Seward would even wander the campus of Grounds For Sculpture and introduce himself to unsuspecting groups of visitors. A special man with a heart he proudly shared, Seward’s life continues to inspire all.
This event was hosted by the Trenton Downtown Association, a group of stakeholders devoted to the progress and prosperity of Trenton’s busiest hub. Bryan Evans, the Trenton Downtown Association Chair and Greater Trenton Senior Vice President, accompanied the tour. Along the way, he provided guests with insights into the historic properties and sites that were seen along the way. As a part of the TDA’s installation, they thoughtfully placed statues near places of significance throughout the community. In addition to the statues, guests also had the opportunity to visit spots like Mill Hill Park, Passage Theatre, and even the location of Trenton’s reading of the Declaration of Independence, only the second time the document had been read in the nation.
When the tour concluded, guests were left with great insights and a newfound appreciation for our downtown community. If you did miss the tour, thankfully, there is still plenty of time to enjoy the downtown installation. If you’d like to read more about the sculptures and visit locations throughout town, please visit the Trenton Downtown Association’s website for additional details: “Celebrating the Ordinary” – TDA. A rich history, culture, and art are hiding around every corner of our community, and it’s ready and waiting for you to come and explore.
The post Downtown Walking Tour Invites Trentonians to Celebrate the Familiar first appeared on TrentonDaily.
Powered by WPeMatico