Photo courtesy XII Travelers
Officials with the XII Travelers of the Southwest are inviting residents to the unveiling of the maquette (model) of the Benito Juarez – Child to Man bronze sculpture, to be held at Chamizal National Memorial next week.
There will be entertainment, refreshments, and free parking at the event, scheduled for Thursday, August 22 at 11:00 am.
The bronze sculpture of Benito Juarez will be the fourth monumental statue to be completed by the XII Travelers of the Southwest. The others are Fray Garcia de San Francisco, (Pioneer Plaza,) The Equestrian (Airport,) and Susan Shelby Magoffin (Keystone Heritage Park.)
The dual figure sculpture will feature a seated Benito Juarez as a 12-year-old Zapotec Indian shepherd, and as the President of Mexico.
In addition to the preview of Ethan Houser’s inspired work of art, there will also be a special initial viewing of the Abraham Lincoln/Benito Juarez Bronze Medallion, another beautiful piece of art, showing both presidents’ faces in bas relief.
Both figures hold books, signifying the essential role that education played in Juarez’s rise from poverty to greatness. There will also be the unveiling of an accompanying medallion featuring the faces of both Abraham Lincoln and Benito Juarez.
“Though the two never met in person, their mutual respect and support for each other, before and during their countries’ respective civil wars, are an inspiration to us all,” officials shared. “It signifies, in a powerful way, the importance of mutual understanding and sensitivity to each other’s cultures, relationships, and histories.”
Officials added that this unique project is especially significant because such a commemoration in the neighboring Chamizal parks has been many years in the making.
“In 1964, Ciudad Juarez erected a statue of Abraham Lincoln. A 1986 development concept plan for Chamizal National Memorial proposed a statue that was never created, but now the El Paso park is reciprocating with the bronze sculpture, Benito Juarez-Child to Man.”