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.
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,"
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.