Those who pass by the Bartholomew County Public Library in Columbus can’t help but notice a large sculpture on its plaza. But whether they know its name, who created it, how long it’s been in that spot or why it’s there likely depends on the person’s age, how long they’ve lived in Columbus or their interest in architecture and art.
For the record, the 5.5-ton piece was created by the late sculptor Henry Moore and is known as the “Large Arch.” It was installed on the plaza in 1971 — 45 years ago — and was a gift to the community from the late Cummins leader J. Irwin Miller and his late wife, Xenia Miller, who was an arts advocate.
Those familiar with the sculpture know that if you are positioned in the right place, the arch frames First Christian Church, the city’s first example of Modern architecture.
To celebrate what would have been the 118th birthday of “Large Arch” sculptor Moore, the Columbus Area Arts Council is having a free party for it from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday at the library plaza, 536 Fifth St. The event will include music and a drawing activity for all ages.
This is a nice and welcome way to celebrate one of the city’s iconic pieces and in the process educate residents about it.
“Large Arch” is one of many iconic images in Columbus, a small city that is world-renowned for its architecture. However, the details or importance of the pieces may be unknown to a new generation of residents — whether they have grown up in Columbus or moved here.
An event such as Saturday’s birthday party for Moore’s large sculpture is a good way to celebrate and educate at the same time. Whether you are a fan of the “Large Arch” or want to learn more about it, the party would be worthwhile for you to attend.