Photo: Brendan O’Neill, sculptor, third from left, unveiled the original clay cast of Harriet Tubman in October 2016 at the Troika Gallery for approval of Maryland Dept. of Natural Resources officials. From left to right, Susan O’Neill, Easton Business Alliance Town Manager Ross Benicasa, Brendan O’Neill, Troika Gallery Co-Owner Laura Era, State of Maryland Park Manager Dana Paterra, Troika Gallery Manager Peg Fitzgerald, Dept. Of Natural Reources Jordan Loran and State of Maryland Park Ranger, Angela Crenshaw. It took approximnately three months at the foundry to transform the clay bust into bronze.
The bronze bust of Harriet Tubman, to be unveiled this weekend at the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center in Dorchester County was sculpted by Brendan O’Neill, a Troika Gallery artist.
Sculptor O’Neill works in bronze depicting American historical figures. His first bust of Harriet Tubman was displayed in the governor’s residence in Annapolis, MD. “Harriet Tubman is one of the most inspiring Marylanders and greatest Americans we have ever known, and I’m grateful for Brendan O’Neill Sr. donating his talents to share her history with generations to come,” then Governor O’Malley said. “In commemorating the life of Harriet Tubman, we’re ensuring that the healing light of those who shine against the darkness of human frailty will never dim.” Brendan replied, “I am honored to have been involved in this project to pay tribute with my sculpture to such an iconic figure in Maryland and American History. I wanted to portray Harriet as a young woman in her 30’s as she might have looked at the time of the Underground Railroad and to create an image of a powerful yet simple young woman, humble yet watchful, and strong in leading her people.”
A graduate of Georgetown University, Brendan has been sculpting in bronze for almost 40 years. He studied at the Corcoran and took masters workshops with Eugene Daub, Paul Lucchesi, and at Nancy Frankel Studios. Busts of Native Americans, notable citizens, and animals sculpted by Brendan O’Neill are collected throughout the United States.
Troika Gallery currently is exhibiting a hand drawn pen and ink portrait of Harriet Tubman and a smaller bronze version of Harriet Tubman by Brendan T. O’Neill. The gallery is open Monday through Saturday 10 to 5:30. For more information visit www.troikagallery.com