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Waterfront 'Angel' Honors Ossining, Portugal Firefighters

Members of the Ossining Fire Department stand at Harbor Square around "The Angel" sculpture at Sunday's dedication ceremony.
Members of the Ossining Fire Department stand at Harbor Square around "The Angel" sculpture at Sunday's dedication ceremony. Photo Credit: Contributed

OSSINING, N.Y. -- Local residents can take pride in a new sculpture unveiled Wednesday  beautifying the waterfront that pays tribute to the firefighters of their local village and sister city in Portugal.

The modern sculpture called "Angel" by artist César Israel Paulo, of Portugal, is a tribute to the fire departments of Alijó, Portugal, and Ossining and was installed on the new public waterfront park and promenade of the luxury rental complex.

In addition, a public kiosk in the park that features eight large-scale plaques commemorating the history of the Ossining waterfront, was also unveiled.

Angel is a 23-foot tall carbon steel sculpture, the fourth sculpture to be installed at Harbor Square. Commissioned by Harbor Square developer Martin Ginsburg, it is an exact replica of a sculpture in Alijó.

The idea to replicate it came from former Ossining Village Mayor William Hanauer who had seen the piece on a recent trip to Portugal. He connected the artist back to Ginsburg to discuss recreating the piece at Harbor Square.

The bright red sculpture varies its color and light and shadow depending on the time of day and year.

“With the completion of this artistic project in Ossining there will be, in two different parts of the globe, two angels standing as an homage to all those who give their lives for others,” said Paulo.

His work is represented in public collections in Portugal and in private collections in Portugal, Europe, and North and Latin America.

"This powerful piece rising from the bank of the Hudson River is a fitting tribute to the remarkable men and women of the Ossining Fire Department,” said Ossining Village Mayor Victoria Gearity.

The new waterfront kiosk features photographs and maps from the Ossining Historical Society Museum.

The kiosk's panels highlight Ossining history, from Sint Sinck Indians to the iconic Sing Sing correctional facility, to the arrival of the Hudson River Railroad’s impact, the Hudson Wire Company, tribute to Henry Gourdine, a renowned local fisherman for whom the park is name, and the opening of Harbor Square.

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