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Freedom of Religion - by Marlene Hilton Moore

Photo: Mark Stegel

A classical bronze male figure holds aloft the symbolic form of a globe, embossed with symbols from a selection of the world’s religions. The representative image includes nine symbols, but it is possible to be as inclusive as possible, by adding more symbols. Each religion’s symbol is quite beautiful as a graphic image and well recognized as belonging to specific religions. The symbols, joined together on the surface of the globe and held uplifted in the hands of an individual, strongly represent each person’s freedom of religious choice.

Canada celebrates the fact that people from all parts of the world have made it their home and that they have brought their religions with them. Freedom of religion is a fundamental component of our Charter of Rights and Freedoms. What is cause for recognition and celebration is that when people immigrate to Canada, they can practise their religion freely. They can, as the sculpture depicts, hold their religion up proudly.

Marlene Hilton Moore - Artist

Marlene Hilton Moore is a renowned artist and sculptor based in Hillsdale, Ontario. She has undertaken numerous public art commissions, and solo and group exhibitions throughout Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. She has received several awards from organizations such as the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and others. From 1985 to 2010, she was a professor at Georgian College’s School of Design and Visual Arts and was Vice-President, Board of Directors, of the MacLaren Art Centre in Barrie Ontario.

Both of Hilton Moore’s sculptures – Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Religion – are based on the human figure as the core element, as the public responds to the human form in sculpture, for in it they see themselves. To this core element Hilton Moore has added clear, symbolic forms to represent Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Expression.

The Classical form, human essence, clear symbols in beautiful and durable materials reflects the vision of the Gardens as an area of repose that focuses on the values of our system of justice and the power of communicating those values through timeless works of art.

The materials used are classical bronze and reflective stainless steel. The artist has incorporated stainless steel with the timeless bronze, as it is a very durable, contemporary material that resonates with reflective beauty. It also draws a material link to the Edwina Sandys sculpture, creating continuity within the Gardens as a whole. The bases are made of dark black/brown granite, symbolic of the law grounded in the earth, the land, and the law of our country.