The ‘Spirit of the Earth’ stone sculpture is on the move.
The piece was donated to the Chemainus community 20 years ago by local stone sculptor Daniel Cline. It’s currently located on the corner of Chemainus Road and Victoria Street across from the Chemainus Theatre, but will be moved to a new site at Heritage Square on Mill Street on Monday, Aug. 19 at 9:30 a.m.
The move was requested by the Chemainus Festival of Murals Society for safety and aesthetic reasons, and approved by the Chemainus Advisory Committee and the Municipality of North Cowichan.
The Municipality will pay $6,500 of the $11,500 relocation cost. The Murals Society is covering the remaining $5,000.
Daniel Cline did the carving in 1999 with help from Ted Speirs and Marcus Carter. The 11-foot marble sculpture represents a mystic First Nations princess, her robe adorned with the wildlife around Vancouver Island. An orca dives from her hair and an eagle soars interconnected with a salmon leaping upwards.
The upper half of the sculpture represents the quiet calm of the Earth while the lower portion depicts the world in action.
The princess represents the Earth, the life-giver, the source of our livelihood.
The sculpture’s new home will allow visitors and residents to see the 360-degree carving at its best. The statue and base weigh approximately nine tons.
The Heritage Square location ties in with the mural, ‘Arrival Of The Reindeer In Horseshoe Bay’, painted by Sandy Clark and Lea Goward in 1983, and ‘Native Heritage’, also painted in 1983 by Paul Ygartua.
It’s expected to take about two hours for the sculpture to be moved. During that time, Victoria Street will be closed down from Chemainus Road to Willow Street, including the lane from Mill Street to Victoria Street and the sidewalk along Heritage Square on Mill Street.
The affected area will also be barricaded during the move.