NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — For 128 years, the Christopher Columbus statue stood in New Haven’s Wooster Square.
Now, a design by Branford-based sculptor Marc-Anthony Massaro awaits final approval to replace the statue of a man who was a hero to some, a villain to others.
As the pandemic was ramping up, Christopher Columbus statues, including the one in New Haven, were coming down as racial injustice protests exploded across the nation following the death of George Floyd.
Recently, the Wooster Square Monument Committee approved the design submitted by Massaro.
Here, Massaro is holding a one-sixth scale a family new to America, with suitcases and dreams of a better life. The young boy is in his father’s arms, pointing symbolically to the future.
“I would say at this point it is probably the most important thing I’ve worked on in my career,” said Massaro.
But to Massaro, it means more than that.
“I’m the grandson of one of the men who settled in that area, and I’m making this monument. And, it really hits close to home. Not close to home, it hits right at home. I’m basically sculpting my own families’ experience,” said Massaro.
Massaro’s grandfather was Frank Consiglio, whose nephew founded the iconic Sally’s Apizza.
Final approval must now come from the Historic District Commission, the Cultural Affairs Commission, the Parks Department, and the Board of Alders.