[48] The Mission San Luis Obispo also removed their statue from public display. [20][3]:17–19[21][22], The reproduction process began by taking precise measurements of all aspects of the concrete statue, using 1,782 points of reference. [3]:3 In August 1936, the Los Angeles Times published on its front page a large photograph of Kangas posing with the clay sculpture. Statues of Father Junipero Serra are being taken down or torn down due to his historical involvement in enslaving and killing the native people of California. [49], 1936 Federal Art Project in Ventura, California of Junípero Serra, Bronze cast in front of Ventura City Hall in 2009. The nonprofit Coalition for Historical Integrity has sued the city of Ventura over the Ventura City Council’s decision to remove the statue of Father Junipero Serra from the front of Ventura City Hall. During the weekend, two statues of Father Junipero Serra, a Spanish priest who established several missions in California in the 1770’s and helped lead to the settlement of the state, were removed by protesters in Los Angeles and San Francisco. 2 statues removed, one more in works. 3 in 1974. [15][3]:24 According to a book written on the process, "more than 4,000 charts, drawings, grids, and photographs were made from the measurements. In late May, protesters tore down statues of Serra in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park and Los Angeles’s Olvera Street. The city council decided in 2020 to remove the bronze statue and the wood replica from public display. The Father Serra statue in Ventura, California, depicting Junípero Serra, the founder of Mission San Buenaventura, was commissioned by Ventura County through the Works Progress Administration as part of the Federal Art Project. VENTURA, Calif. - Leaders from the City of Ventura have been discussing the future removal of … [31][25], In May 1980, primer paint was poured over the concrete statue; city workers sandblasted the paint from the statue. Statue of St. Junipero Serra at the Ventura (California) City Hall (photo: Sh) Paul Kengor Nation June 25, 2020. To that end, Ventura Mayor Matt LaVere organized a meeting with representatives from the Barbareño/ Ventureño Band of Mission Indians (Chumash) and Father Tom Elewaut of Mission San Buenaventura. The Ventura City Council voted unanimously Wednesday night to remove a controversial statue of Father Junipero Serra from outside its City Hall. Was it purposeful? For the first time in Ventura County, a statue representing the colonization, enslavement and killing of the Chumash people, the indigenous people who lived on the land that today is called the City of San Buenaventura, will be removed. The nonprofit Coalition for Historical Integrity has sued the city of Ventura over the Ventura City Council’s decision to remove the statue of Father Junipero Serra from the front of Ventura City Hall. The Father Serra statue in Ventura, California, standing 9 feet, 4 inches, was displayed in front of Ventura City Hall between 1936 to 2020. The bronze statue of St. Junipero Serra in front of Ventura's City Hall. [7], The disposition of the original clay sculpture is unknown. [12][14], Ownership of the concrete statue passed from Ventura County to the City of Ventura in 1971. The bronze statue of St. Junipero Serra in front of Ventura's City Hall. "[30], The City's plan to display the wooden replica in the atrium of Ventura City Hall was met with objections from the city art committee and the Candelaria American Indian Council. The statue, sculpted by Uno John Palo Kangas, was placed in a prominent location in a public park across the street from the Ventura County Courthouse in 1936. Photo by Stephen Heap. [13][3]:53 As of April 2018[update], the concrete statue remained at the OST yard in a decaying wooden crate. Located on a pedestrian island in front of Ventura City Hall at the intersection of N. California Street and Poli Street is a bronze statue of Father Junipero Serra. Ventura sued for removing Serra statue Lawsuit seeks statue's return to site outside City Hall. Serra oversaw the construction of nine of the California missions. [5], Kangas began by visiting the Santa Barbara and Ventura missions to study images of Serra and to learn about his life and style of dress. But how do we best do it? This statue of Father Junípero Serra in front of Ventura City Hall and other Serra statues will be removed. The Father Serra statues in downtown Ventura (Both outside and inside City Hall) are offensive and must be taken down by the City of Ventura, and Ventura Unified must move towards changing the names of Junipero Serra Elementary and Blanche Reynolds Elementary schools, immediately. Ventura Mayor Matt LaVere, the Barbareño/Venureño Band of Mission Indians and Father Tom Elewaut issue a joint statement agreeing to move a statue of missionary Junipero Serra. The city installed a bronze statue in 1989 to replace the deteriorating original. The young Catholics placed themselves between the vandals and the statue of Saint Junipero Serra located at Ventura city hall in California Thu Jun 25, 2020 - 3:36 pm EST [3]:6 After the concrete hardened, the mold was removed and Kangas smoothed the outer surface. Elewaut said in an interview that he personally favors keeping the statue where it is, but will go along with the others to bring a peaceful resolution to the issue. A demonstration is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday to demand that a statue of Father Junipero Serra on public property in front of Ventura City Hall be … VENTURA, Calif. - A few people stopped by to take pictures of the historic Father Junipero Serra statue in front of Ventura City Hall on Father's Day. "[3]:28 Master carver Wilbur Rubottom and a team of 16 carvers from the Channel Islands Carvers club then painstakingly created the wood replica in a studio at the old livery building on Palm Street in Ventura. You can contact him at mike.harris@vcstar.com or 805-437-0323. Newsom apologizes to Native Americans in California, Your California Privacy Rights / Privacy Policy. VENTURA (CBSLA) – The Ventura City Council voted unanimously Wednesday night to remove a controversial statue of Father Junipero Serra from outside its City Hall. There’s been controversy over whether a statue of Father Junipero Serra should remain in downtown Ventura, in from of Ventura City Hall. The unveiling ceremony was attended by Kangas, Governor Frank Merriam, Mayor George A. Newell, Jr., and other notable persons. Kangas was paid $5,000 for his work. In Ventura, LaVere, Tumamait-Stenslie and Father Tom Elewaut, pastor of the mission founded by Serra in 1782 and built by the indigenous people, issued a joint statement on June 18 agreeing to take down the statue and have it “moved to a more appropriate non-public location.” NOTE: On June 18, 2020, the City of Ventura issued a press release stating that it plans to work with members of the community in moving the statue of Father Junipero Serra to a new, non-public location. "[10], By the 1980s, it had deteriorated from years of exposure to Ventura's salt air and from the pooling of rainwater in the collar of the statue's robe, which formed a basin. Father Serra is known as one of the founders of California’s historic missions. Mike Harris covers the East County cities of Simi Valley and Thousand Oaks, as well as transportation countywide. The author, Rellis Smith, wrote: "To have statues such as the one in front of Ventura City Hall is a direct slap in the face of all Chumash and other Native American cultures. Jessica M. Roybal, the executive director of the Indian Council, said “What a slap in the face to the Indian people.”[31] Members of the Padre Serra Parish in nearby Camarillo offered to display the wooden statue in a place of honor but were turned down. [3]:6, On November 27, 1936, Kangas' concrete sculpture[9] was unveiled in front of the Ventura County Courthouse (later converted to Ventura City Hall). [7] The clay sculpture was built around a frame of wood and chicken wire which Kangas then covered with layers of clay. At 4 a.m. on a Thursday last July — in the midst of nationwide turmoil about the heroes we create when we put statues in public parks — a large bronze statue of Father Junipero Serra was removed from a highly visible location in front of Ventura’s classic Beaux-Arts City Hall. 3 in 1974. "We've been seeing around the country and the world statues of racist and genocidal people being taken down and we think it's time that happens in Ventura," said Ben Leaños, 23, of Camarillo, one of the demonstration's organizers. [1] The statue, standing nine feet, four inches in height shows Father Serra standing with his head facing to the left and wearing a Franciscan cassock with cowl, sandals, and a rope belt (or cincture), a rosary hanging from the belt, a book in his left hand, and a walking stick (or staff) in his right hand. Please do not move or destroy the statue of Father Junipero Serra. Father Junipero Serra (1713-1784) was a Roman Catholic Spanish Franciscan friar who founded nine Spanish Missions in California stretching from San Diego to Carmel. [3]:13[15], Based on the findings, Councilman Burns proposed the creation of a wood replica of the statue which could then be used as a model for a bronze cast to be put in place of the decaying concrete statue. A plaque at the base of the statue states: "The citizens of the City of San Buenaventura gratefully recognize the extraordinary efforts of Councilman Russell Burns (1918–1994) and master carver Wilbur Rubottom (1914–1993) to replace the decaying concrete 1936 statue of Father Serra by John Palo-Kangas with this bronze copy dedicated on October 20, 1989. "We all believe that the removal of the statue should be accomplished without force, without anger and ... without uncivil discourse, much less vandalism," the statement says. [47] A statue in Carmel was removed for safekeeping. VENTURA (CBSLA) – The Ventura City Council voted unanimously Wednesday night to remove a controversial statue of Father Junipero Serra from outside its City Hall. Serra is credited with bringing Catholicism to California in the 18th century when it was a Spanish colony. The Junipero Serra statue at Ventura City Hall. The Father Junipero Serra statue, as seen here in front of Ventura City Hall, has been removed and moved to Mission San Buenaventura. [46], The attention and damage to the statues of Junípero Serra was renewed during the George Floyd protests which expanded to include monuments of individuals associated with the controversy over the genocide of indigenous peoples in the Americas. [6] The sculpting process began with the creation of a full-size clay model; the clay model took four months to complete and was built at Kangas' studio at 3929 Fountain Avenue in Los Angeles. [3]:11 In 1983, Ventura City Councilman Russell Burns, a mechanical engineer, presented a report to the City Council describing the deterioration of the statue and concluding that the statue "in the not too distant future will fall apart. A nationwide campaign to remove statues of historical figures deemed to be racist is now bubbling up in Ventura. Removal of a historic landmark requires a review under the California Environmental Quality Act. US HEADLINES: Nearly 100 speakers took turns over three hours extolling the virtues or excoriating the legacy of 18th century Roman Catholic Saint Such a move would be "a historic decision," the statement says. (Credit Ken Lund/Flickr/ CC BY-SA 2.0) (Credit Ken Lund/Flickr/ CC BY-SA 2.0) By a 6-0 vote, the Ventura City Council approved a motion at the end of a special meeting on Wednesday, July 15, to permanently remove two statues of St. Junípero Serra from public land. A statue in Los Angeles and another statue in San Francisco were toppled on Juneteenth. The wood replica was set in the atrium of the city hall for public display. Father Junipero Serra Statue Mission San Buenaventura Ventura Ca - Buy this stock photo and explore similar images at Adobe Stock (Credit: Cbl62/wikimedia. The last of these nine missions, founded on March 31, 1782, was Mission San Buenaventura, which today is an active parish of 3,000 members located at 211 East Main Streetin Ventura. "Father Serra saw himself as a spiritual father for the indigenous people," he said. A bronze cast replaced the concrete statue in 1989. The mold was placed in front of the courthouse, and a scaffolding was built around the mold. A demonstration is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday to demand that a statue of Father Junipero Serra on public property in front of Ventura City Hall be taken down on grounds he committed atrocities against Native Americans, including the Chumash, in the 18th century. The Father Serra statue in Ventura, California, standing 9 feet, 4 inches, was displayed in front of Ventura City Hall between 1936 to 2020. requesting that the City of Ventura remove the statue of Father Junipero Serra from its location near City Hall. Statue of St. Junipero Serra at the Ventura (California) City Hall (photo: Sh) Paul Kengor Nation June 25, 2020. Finnish sculptor John Palo-Kangas originally cast it in cement, which decayed over the years. In 1936, the Federal Art Project (part of the New Deal) funded this heroic sculpture. "Saturday's demonstration is to hear our voices that we want to have the statue of Father Serra removed," Salazar, of Ventura, said. Junipero Serra founded the city of Ventura in 1782 when he established the mission of San Buenaventura, and his statue has stood in front of the city hall since 1936. But, there’s been controversy about the way the settlers treated Native Americans. LaVere said he, Elewaut and Tumamait-Stenslie plan to attend Saturday's rally. It belongs where it was placed, by the community of Ventura and the generous fundraising efforts to replace the historic statue. [33] In May 1992, the bronze cast's hand was painted with red paint, and a message was stenciled on the concrete below accusing Serra of having failed to honor God and claiming that Serra was a symbol of slavery to Native Americans. requesting that the City of Ventura remove the statue of Father Junipero Serra from its location near City Hall. [3]:6 According to a contemporary of the artist, Kangas used Meiners Oak resident Gordon Douglas as a model for the face of Serra. [26] A group of the student artists visited the wood statue at the old livery building and made latex molds in multiple sections. In other states, some statues have been vandalized and forcibly removed by demonstrators. ", "Ventura City Council decides to remove controversial Junipero Serra statues at City Hall", "Grassroots group sues Ventura over removal of Serra statue from in front of City Hall", "Ventura Removes Controversial Junipero Serra Statue Following Protest", "Mission statue of Serra sustains damage", "Head reattached to St. Junipero Serra statue in Monterey", "St. Junipero Serra statue vandalized in Mission Hills", "Decapitated and doused with red paint: Vandals target St. Junipero Serra statue at Santa Barbara mission", "Vandal damages Padre Serra statue in San Gabriel", "Demonstrators topple statue of Junipero Serra, who helped found missions in California, in DTLA", "Serra statue removed in Carmel for safekeeping, local cities deciding fate of others", "Junípero Serra statue removed from San Luis Obispo Mission", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Father_Serra_statue&oldid=995721111, Monuments and memorials removed during the George Floyd protests, Short description is different from Wikidata, Infobox mapframe without OSM relation ID on Wikidata, Articles containing potentially dated statements from April 2018, All articles containing potentially dated statements, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 22 December 2020, at 15:06. The special public meeting will include the Ventura Mayor, City Council, and City leadership. [27][28][3]:58–59, The bronze cast[9] was unveiled in front of Ventura City Hall at a ceremony on October 20, 1989, attended by more than 500 persons. "Junipero Serra is the head of Ventura, he has been with us from the beginning, I am sorry to see he has a mask on again." [3]:13 The studies reached the conclusion that the statue should be moved inside and that the statue was too fragile to be copied by molding. [4] Kangas had gained some acclaim in 1935 for a heroic statue of a Civilian Conservation Corps worker titled "Conservation of Man and Nature" that was installed at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. To that end, Ventura Mayor Matt LaVere organized a meeting with representatives from the Barbareño/ Ventureño Band of Mission Indians (Chumash) and Father Tom Elewaut of Mission San Buenaventura. The Father Junipero Serra statue, as seen here in front of Ventura City Hall, has been removed and moved to Mission San Buenaventura. But some historians and others blame Serra for what they say were his efforts to do away with Native American culture in California and for the premature deaths of thousands of indigenous people. [32] In January 1991, four glass jars of orange and blue paint were thrown at the bronze cast; the words "Spirit of Crazy Horse" and an image of a clenched fist were also spray-painted on the sidewalk at the base of the statue. "[3]:12 The City in 1984 commissioned studies of the statue by an art conservator, an engineering firm, and a concrete expert. Father Serra is credited with bringing Catholicism to California but many blame him for what they say were his efforts to do away with … [25], In 1988, the City of Ventura accepted a $17,000 bid from a group of student artists at the California Sculpture Center at College of the Desert in Palm Desert to create a bronze cast of the sculpture using the wood replica. "Were people decimated? It was June 2001, our first trip to California. Father Junipero Serra Statue in Downtown Ventura June 14, 2020 / Conejo Joe. A demonstration was held. As deterioration of the concrete statue became a concern, a wood replica was created by local carvers and used to make a bronze cast. The petition also calls for the Ventura Unified School District to move towards changing the names of Junipero Serra Elementary and Blanche Reynolds Elementary schools. Of course he was going to protect us. [4][29] The bronze cast stands on a concrete base with an outer layer of polished black granite from the Andes Mountains. A bronze cast replaced the concrete statue in 1989. © 2021 www.vcstar.com. [3]:2 The carvers' studio was open to the public, and busloads of schoolchildren, senior citizens, and tourists visited the studio to observe the process. Members of the art committee felt the statue was too large and not harmonious with the design of the atrium. [15] During the 1987 Ventura County Fair, the wood block was temporarily moved to the county fairgrounds where the carvers' work became an attraction for visitors. US HEADLINES: Nearly 100 speakers took turns over three hours extolling the virtues or excoriating the legacy of 18th century Roman Catholic Saint on Saturday, June 20, to demand that the statue of Father Junipero Serra in front of Ventura City Hall be taken down on grounds that he had committed atrocities against Native Americans, including the local Chumash. Elewaut defended Serra against allegations that he was racist and committed genocide. He gained sainthood in 2015 when he was canonized by Pope Francis. The City had already commissioned through the art committee a series of murals reproducing local Chumash petroglyphs in the atrium. What else would he do? Community Leaders Propose Moving Controversial Statue On South Coast . All rights reserved. In 1782, Serra founded Mission San Buenaventura, his ninth and final mission, on a site that became downtown Ventura. "We are calling for restorative justice and are petitioning for his statue to be removed immediately.". The Father Junípero Serra monument has stood as a city landmark in front of the Ventura City Hall since 1936. Youths in Camp", "Fra Serra Clay Statue Finished by Sculptor", "Merriam Pays High Honor to Father Serra", "Buried Treasure: Original Statue of Father Junipero Serra Found in Scrap Yard", "Two meetings on fate of Ventura's Father Serra statue slated as emotions run high", "Transformation: Retired Cabinetmaker's Rendering of Father Serra Helps Resurrect a Statue Ravaged by Sea Air, Time", "Church Members on Mission to Get City's Serra Statue", "Father Serra sculpture being recast at COD", "Palm Desert Sculpture School to Cast Bronze Copy of Junipero Serra Statue", "Serra Statue to Be Shown Over Protests of 2 Groups", "Latino Catholics See Reflection in a Friar Set for Sainthood", "Junipero Serra statue to be moved away from Ventura City Hall", "California is confronting its ugly, racist past. View of Father Serra Statue and California Street from steps of Ventura City Hall. [39] The council found that the bronze statue did not meet the requirements to be designated a historic landmark since the bronze cast had never been officially deemed as such after it replaced the concrete statue. The nine-foot bronze statue of Father Junipero Serra was erected in 1989, replacing a cement version that had deteriorated since it was first erected in 1936 with funding from the New Deal. In 1935, Uno John Palo Kangas (1904–1957), a sculptor born in Finland and raised in Michigan, was commissioned by Ventura County and the Works Progress Administration to create a statue of Father Serra as part of the Federal Art Project. "The removal of the statue is going to give us a place to breathe. [3]:2 The wood replica was installed at the atrium of Ventura City Hall on October 7, 1988. (Al Seib / Los Angeles Times) For a time Saturday, it looked as if a statue of Junipero Serra outside City Hall in downtown Ventura might join the growing ranks of toppled figures. 2 statues removed, one more in works. However, a newspaper story from April 1938 suggests that the original clay model may have been loaned to a museum in Butte, Montana, for an exhibition on scale models of sculpture. Although the historic figure is … Father Junipero Serra(1713-1784) was a Roman CatholicSpanish Franciscan friar who founded nine Spanish Missions in California stretching from San Diegoto Carmel. Pictured: The bronze statue of Father Junipero Serra at Ventura City Hall. [3]:13 In 1986, Burns' proposal was unanimously adopted by the Ventura City Council. [15][3]:28–39[23][24] The carving began with large strips of basswood from linden trees in a Great Lakes forest that were glued together to form a 1,200-pound block. Reynolds was a segregationist who favored maintaining "white privilege in schools" and espoused anti-Mexican sentiments, the petition says. Merriam said: "A beautiful statue is about to be made visible, exemplifying the spirit of this pioneering priest – noble, brave and holy – a patriot of patriots. In Ventura he was protected by young people from Ventura. Related news: Newsom apologizes to Native Americans in California, "The statue represents a very dark time in our history," said Julie Tumamait-Stenslie, tribal chair of the Barbareno/Ventureno Band of Mission Indians (Chumash). And I suspect that it's probably inevitable.". It is as iconic as the train horn that announces the train’s arrival, in this beautiful city. LaVere said in an interview that removal of the statue would have to be authorized by the Ventura City Council and should also involve the voices of the Chumash tribe and Ventura residents. A place to not constantly be reminded of what happened to us and our families.". In Ventura, the letter announcing the removal of the Serra statue was signed by Mayor Matt LaVere; Father Tom Elewaut, pastor at the San Buenaventura Mission Church; and … [3]:57 The bronze figure was then cast in 20 pieces using the "lost wax" method. In addition, the statue was vandalised with paint and the City sandblasted the statue, damaging the statue's smooth outer layer and accelerating the decay. This statue of Father Junípero Serra in front of Ventura City Hall and other Serra statues will be removed. The last of these nine missions, founded on March 31, 1782, was Mission San Buenaventura, which today is an active parish of 3,000 members located at 211 East Main Street in Ventura. The Father Junípero Serra monument has stood as a city landmark in front of the Ventura City Hall since 1936. Father Serra was called by many "the apostle of California" and has long held an honored place in California's diverse and culturally collaborative history. (Credit: Cbl62/wikimedia. "As a community we cannot and will not support the dehumanization of the Native American community any longer," the petition says. Meanwhile, a petition on change.org to have the statue taken down had gathered more than 5,200 signatures as of Thursday afternoon. [20] The wooden Serra statue was placed in a corner of the atrium with explanatory plaques. The story announced: "'Fray Junipero Serra', by John Palo-Kangas, one of the scale models of sculpture to be shown at the Butte Art Center, beginning on April 21st, is in the original at the Ventura county courthouse at San Buenaventura, Calif."[8], Kangas next built a breakaway mold of the clay sculpture using plaster of paris. Plaque displayed at the base of the statue. The bronze statue of St. Junipero Serra in front of Ventura's City Hall. 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