Eldon Garnet’s mindfulness keeps Equal Before the Law from becoming yet another hackneyed statement about human rights.
It’s very easy to say that people are treated equally under the law, but in practice, it’s a lot of work. It requires measurement, and balance and ongoing evaluation.
The foundation of Canadian jurisprudence is equality before and under the law. It is the basis for the Canadian Charter of Rights, and the expectation of every plaintiff who stands before judge and jury. To represent this basic and fundamental right, the McMurtry Gardens of Justice selected Eldon Garnet to create a piece that would encompass the many intricacies of this concept.
As you recall, there are eleven figures supporting the courthouse roof. But juries in Canada have twelve members. Where is the 12th juror?
Sandys obviously put a lot of thought into Pillars of Justice and kept in mind that the Gardens are not merely meant to be a place to visit and meditate on the rights afforded to Canadian citizens, but is also a place to educate people on those rights. And Sandys has found a very clever way of doing it.
The first piece of art installed at The McMurtry Gardens of Justice was Edwina Sandys’ Pillars of Justice. The statue, executed in steel, is composed of a 20-foot pediment supported by eleven columns fashioned into stylized masculine and feminine figures. It is meant to represent the right of a Canadian citizen to be tried by a jury of their peers.
When Freedom of Religion faces Freedom of Expression, is there a winner? Does there have to be?
The man, reminiscent of Atlas, is in fact Freedom of Religion, and he is carrying the faiths of the world in his hands.
She’s unadorned as the best truths are, and those are usually the most threatening to our world view. But should we feel that way?
As you walk under the rotunda and into the McMurtry Gardens of Justice, you will notice two large figures flanking the laneway. Who are they? What do they represent?