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Elmwood Bridge’s Sculptural Lanterns Pay Homage to the McKinley Lions

A Buffalo Rising reader has sent along a link to a Public Art Commission that has been designed for the Elmwood Bridge at the entranceway to the Gallery District. The public art is reflective of one of the bridges that once graced this part of Delaware Park – see lion sculptures in this post.

The new works of art consist of six sculptures that play off of the lions residing at the monument at Niagara Square. These “monumental sculptural lanterns” take into account the glory of the 1901 Pan American Exposition, the 1907 McKinley Monument (Niagara Square), animals at the Buffalo Zoo (in Delaware Park, an Olmsted Park), all intertwined into a significant gateway project that reminds people that they are coming and going from a place of historic value and significance.

If you don’t see the lion sculptures right off the bat, it’s because the designs use negative volumes, which represent the missing lions that once graced the nearby Lincoln Bridge. What most people don’t know is that those lions were temporary sculptures constructed for the Pan Am Expo, which apparently inspired the Italian marble lions at the McKinley Monument. The new works of art feature stainless steel panels that formulate the silhouette of the lions. Not only are each of the works of art different, as they reflect the various profiles of the McKinley lions, they also change in appearance depending on the perspective of the viewer. 

More on this project can be viewed here.


Design Team: Joshua G. Stein, Jessica Gardner, Eda Yetim, Nathan Adams, Vishnu Medapati, Rebecca Fox

Engineering: WSP

Fabrication: Rigidized Metals

There is no indication that this is indeed the project that we will see grace the bridge, though it is assumed likely due to the monumental effort that has gone into the project thus far.  

Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

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