The Bill Russell Legacy Project

Submitted by Ann Hirsch

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Client: The Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation

Location: City Hall Plaza, Boston, MA, United States

Completion date: 2015

Project Team

Landscape Architect

Ann Hirsch

Sculpture Studio

Art Consultant

Boston Art Commission

Overview

The artwork which is installed on the open brick plaza of Boston's City Hall is comprised of an over lifesize bronze sculpture and an 18' x 33' field of granite plinths and brick and granite paving. Each of the ten plinths bears a quote by Bill Russell that speaks to his legacy of teamwork both on and off the court. The artwork tells the story of Bill Russell through physical exploration and engagement with its components.

Goals

The goal of the project was to celebrate the legacy of Bill Russell the champion athlete, human rights activist and national mentorship leader who has inspired generations both on and off the court. The artwork responds to its context by borrowing the unit of the precast block from Boston's Brutalist City Hall and transforming it into a series of platforms with and on which visitors interact.

Process

The artist worked closely with landscape architect Pressley Associates as well as with the client, the local art commission (the Boston Art Commission), the Mayor's Office, property management for City Hall Plaza and family members.

Additional Information

The Bill Russell Legacy Project is inspired by Russell’s quote “There is no such thing as other people’s children.” The project aims to encourage a consciousness of one’s own responsibility in taking care that each person, especially children, in our society has the same chances to succeed.