Sunday, January 17, 2010

A new Great Blue Heron Comes to Centerport, Long Island Roberto Julio Bessin's Sculpture

On Friday January 15th a new Great Blue Heron came to Centerport's Millpond.

This bird didn't fly to its new perch, but came on a flatbed truck, which was transported by the Orient Point Ferry, across the Long Island Sound, traveled down the Long Island Expressway, and helped into its new spot by another kind of crane.
Inspired by nature, this is the creation of the sculptor, Roberto Julio Bessin, who worked on this sculpture for the Centerport community for the cost of the materials.
Roberto Julio Bessin and William Perks attach guide ropes to the sculpture.
The artist carefully balanced this 22 foot bronze sculpture, weighing around 1200 pounds, for the trip, from Newport, Rhode Island, to Centerport Harbor.
The Town of Huntington 25 ton crane was operated by Bob Conrad and an assistant Tony, came from NYC to assist in the delicate placement of the sculpture.
Silicon Bronze was used for the Heron,  which took Bessin, his son, and his assistant, over 2000 man hours for its conception, construction and delivery. 
A foundation was established beforehand in Centerport's Millpond, in a Town of Huntington park, which is across  from the childhood home of artist Bessin.
Gloria Wertheimer, President of the Centerport Harbor Civic Association, worked for over 10 years on the Great Heron project, which was purchased by donations, which were in excess of $30,000.  Here she makes a champagne toast with Bessin.
The sculpture was carefully secured by the artist and volunteers.
Bessin lovingly guides the Heron's beak, which was polished silicon bronze. The white of the Heron's eye is made of German silver which the sculptor got in a trade of materials from a Centerport neighbor.
Feet first. The feet and the legs of this bird were given a bit of artistic license to compensate for structural support.
Bessin guides the feet.
The crew works to bolt the sculpture to the foundation.
Tightening the bolts to the metal pads.
Artist securing the base.
 The two cranes separate. Many people contributed to the success of this community project, including Ralph Colamussi, of the Thatched Cottage restaurant on the Centerport Harbor, and Wiliam Naughton, Town of Huntington Highway Superintendent.
There was another heron sculpture in the Centerport Millpond,  which was 42 feet high and is now owned by James Miller of Miller Environmental Group. Heron sculptures are in their yards in Southhold and in
Staten Island.  Many people would see the first Heron from 25A, or Northern Blvd. on their way to work, as I did for years.  I wondered what happened to it.  But now there is another sculpture by Bessin in Centerport Harbor.  I've been told that the sculptor names each bird.  This one is called "Hope." 
Another sculpture by Bessin is in the harbor of  Greenport, Long Island, the Osprey names "Morning Call,"
Metal Osprey....Greenport Harbour    Long Island   NY by keithhull.
commemorating the events of 9/11.   Girders from the Trade Center, Ground Zero,  were used in the construction of the base of this Bessin sculpture.
This is a photograph of a White Heron , taken by my brother, Dr. Paul Guglielmino, in Florida.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Christmas on Kiawah Island, Charleston, South Carolina

A wonderful waterfront retreat can be found on Kiawah Island which is near Charleston, South Carolina.

Kiawah is south of Charleston and John's Island.

Delta airlines runs a 50 seater jet directly from La Guardia in NYC, to Charleston.  The flight was pleasant, and about two hours.

The first evening, Christmas, was spent at the Charleston Harbor Resort & Marina. We had a delicious dinner there after spending some time in their pub.

Pelicans were perched on pilings on the dock.

The sunset looking out from the dock at Charleston, was beautiful.

Our family rented a six bedroom house on a lagoon on Kiawah Island.  This actually turned out to be a real bargain, considering the huge size of the house and the large dining room, kitchen, living areas, and proximity to the ocean beach.

In addition to the waterfront, the house backed up to a lagoon. 

There was a wooden bike path over the lagoon which lead to the ocean beach.
Houses right on the beach are overwhelming.  Maybe a bit too large.

I was wondering what was going on inside these homes.  Ours was large, but these were really big.  What did they use all of that space for?

 For all of us, it was about the beach, where even in an off season, beauty was everywhere.

Beach vines just after the boardwalk.

Tiny shore birds skirting the incoming surf.

A Horseshoe Crab shell in the sand.

 The underside of a starfish.

Large American Stiff Pen shells were everywhere,
as were sponges, Dead Man's Fingers,

Moon snail shells,

and Whelks, and their egg cases.

The little sand collar, next to the Whelk's egg case, is made by the Moon snails so that they can lay their eggs inside the protective ring.

These branches were both yellow and shocking pink.

An egg case from a Skate.

The beach has fine sand, is very wide, and surf crosses the beach in flat ripples.

Walking along this beach is both tranquil and refreshing.
On the paths to the beach, Live Oaks grow, covered with Spanish Moss, which hangs gracefully down.
We all had a wonderful time on Kiawah Island, and continued our vacation by visiting the many sites in historic Charleston, and on John's Island.