2011 Governors Arts Awards
On April 27, 2011 at the State House, Governor John Lynch presented award recipients with an original commissioned award created by Andre Belanger of Berlin, NH.
Belanger was selected through a Request for Artist Proposals process. The award interprets the eagle designed for the dome of the State House. The sculpture, installed in 1819, was the first commissioned public work of art in the state’s history. Since the 1950s, the wooden original has been safely preserved by the New Hampshire Historical Society at the Tuck Library in Concord and is on display in the building’s rotunda. Its gold-leafed replica currently stands atop the State House dome.
In his artist statement, Belanger observed:
“Although it is not a literal representation of the historic carving, it is a symbolic representation of the iconic eagle that soars in us all... This is symbolic of a pure freedom only found in nature.”
Belanger has worked with the State of New Hampshire on many projects including the 1999 Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington DC and the festival’s restaging, Celebrate New Hampshire Festival held in Contoocook in 2000. Belanger also designed and created the 2005 Governors Arts Award for Community Spirit given to Portsmouth, the Old Man of the Mountain Profile Awards, and the New Hampshire Medal of Honor. He owns his own sign-making and art-based business, Studio Works in Berlin, New Hampshire.
January 20, 2015