Statues - Hither & Thither
Jersey Liberation Sculpture
Singer / Morris Singer / William Morris (London)
At this place on 9th May, 1945,
On the 50th Anniversary of that day,
This Sculpture by Philip Jackson F.R.S.S.
at this place on the 9th may 1945, advanced parties from the royal navy and
on the 50th anniversary of that day, the states and people of jersey
the sculpture by philip jackson frbs was commissioned by the jersey
the design of the square includes a significant degree of symbolism
each circle has a function relating to the sculpture;
the circular and curvelinear forms represent
the plinth of the sculpture represents the island;
the compass rose signifies that jersey is part of
The Liberation Sculpture, which forms the centrepiece of a new square created on St Helier's waterfront to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Liberation in 1995, was certainly the most important, and probably the most controversial work of public art erected in Jersey in the 20th Century. The £150,000 design changed radically in response to fierce public criticism.
When the design was first revealed by the Occupation and Liberation Committee of the States of Jersey, public opinion was generally one of astonishment that a line of figures were shown releasing a number of doves of peace. The Committee explained that they had decided to change the brief to commemorate 50 years of peace, but islanders had been anticipating a sculpture to represent 50 years since the Liberation and many remarked that if any doves had been around at the end of the Occupation, they would probably have been caught and eaten by the hungry population, rather than released.
Many commented that there was no recognition of the military aspect of the Occupation and a subtle serviceman in battledress and boots was added to the group. The original design did not allow interaction, but the revised version allowed members of the public to walk through and join the figures. The artist, Philip Jackson, revealed that his original idea had been to have the figures waving a flag - much more in tune with the public's understanding of the experience of Liberation - but the Committee had decided to change the brief to one of "peace", and so a dove motif had been introduced. Much to the relief of all concerned the revised design incorporated a giant Union Flag.