Unveiling of Permanent Monument to Dr. Sun Yat-sen in Columbus Park, Chinatown

 

 

 

Unveiling of Dr. Sun Yat-sen statue in Columbus Park. Image credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Park

On the anniversary of the 153 birthday of Dr. Sun Yat-sen ~ founder of the Republic of China ~ a permanent sculpture depicting the  early 20th-century revolutionary figure was placed in the northern plaza at Columbus Park in Chinatown.

The sculpture of Dr. Sun Yat-sen has been added to NYC Parks’ permanent art and monuments collection, the northern plaza at Columbus Park has been renamed in his honor. The statue by Taiwanese artist Lu Chun-Hsiung (b.1973) was a gift from the Republic of China (Taiwan). The CCBA has sponsored the commission of the monument and provided a $100,000 maintenance endowment.

Columbus Park. Photo credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Parks

“By making the statue of Dr. Sun Yat-sen a permanent part of our monuments collection and renaming Columbus Park’s northern plaza in his honor, we are advancing our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in our parks and public art,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FACIP. “We are grateful to Mayor de Blasio, Council Member Chin, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, and all who have advocated for this tribute to Chinese culture and history.”

“Since 2011, the community has fought to give the Dr. Sun Yat-sen statue a permanent home in Chinatown, and I am proud that this revolutionary leader’s legacy will be memorialized for generations to come through the naming of the Dr. Sun Yat-sen Plaza at Columbus Park,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin.  “Today, we aren’t just recognizing the importance of Chinese American history – we’re recognizing the critical role that Chinatown has played within global history. I thank Mayor De Blasio, the Parks Department, the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association, my staff and community leaders for your partnership to make today a reality.”

Unveiling of Dr. Sun Yat-sen statue in Columbus Park. Photo credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Parks

It is remarkable to have the Dr. Sun Yat-sen statue permanently standing here in Columbus Park on his 153rd birthday,” said Eric Ng, CCBA President. “His vision and efforts to build a free and unified China will be memorized by New Yorkers and visitors. We sincerely thank everyone who had helped to make this happen.”

“The addition of this sculpture supports our mission that the evolving monument collection reflect the 21st-century metropolis and its diverse citizenry,” said Jonathan Kuhn, NYC Parks Director of Art & Antiquities. “Dr. Sun Yat-sen joins a pantheon of distinguished world independence leaders and human rights advocates, among them Mahatma Gandhi, Simon Bolivar, Frederick Douglass and Eleanor Roosevelt, whose bronze effigies grace our parks.”

Columbus Park. Photo credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Parks

The sculpture of Dr. Sun Yat-sen has been added to NYC Parks’ permanent art and monuments collection, the northern plaza at Columbus Park has been renamed in his honor. The statue by Taiwanese artist Lu Chun-Hsiung (b.1973) was a gift from the Republic of China (Taiwan). The CCBA has sponsored the commission of the monument and provided a $100,000 maintenance endowment.

The sculpture depicts the early-20th century revolutionary figure and founder of the Republic of China in a standing contemplative pose. It is placed on a tapered solid black granite pedestal with a flanged granite base. Inscribed and gilded in Chinese on the front of the pedestal is the Confucian motto, “All Under Heaven Are Equal” rendered in Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s own calligraphy.

Columbus Park. Photo credit: Daniel Avila/NYC Parks

Dr. Sun Yat-sen was born on November 12, 1866, in China during the Qing Dynasty. Inspired by the American Revolution, Dr. Sun envisioned a free and democratic China and became a pioneer in its reform. In 1911, he and his allies overthrew the regime, ending 5,000 years of Chinese imperial rule. Dr. Sun lived in Chinatown as he finalized plans for the Revolution and delivered an important speech at the CCBA in March of 1911.

Dr. Sun Yat-sen permanent statue and plaza renaming in Columbus Park is In partnership with Council Member Margaret Chin and the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association (CCBA), Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYC Parks Commissioner William Castro joined Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer; Council Member Peter Koo; Republic of China Overseas Community Affairs Council Minister Hsin-hsing Wu; Taipei Economic & Cultural Office of New York Ambassador Lily Hsu and members of the community to honor Dr. Sun Yat-sen on his birthday.

Columbus Park is located at Mulberry Street and Baxter Street in Chinatown, NYC

2 thoughts on “Unveiling of Permanent Monument to Dr. Sun Yat-sen in Columbus Park, Chinatown

  1. Nice post. Between this statue honoring Dr Sun Yat-sen & the rebuilding of the Fire Watch Tower in Marcus Garvey Park, this fall has witnessed 2 significant additions in NYC parks.

    But your blog mentions that Dr Sun Yat-Sen lived in “Chinatown”. Is this “Chinatown” in NYC? Where was the building located? Is there any kind of marker?

    Thanks!

    1. During his first visit, it appears that he lived at 22 Mott. A wonderful article by the New York Times in 2002 will give you much more information about places he frequented in our Chinatown and where he may have lived. It does not appear that there are any plaques at that location ~ a worthwhile project, if you’re up to it.

      https://www.nytimes.com/2002/09/01/nyregion/neighborhood-report-chinatown-mott-street-path-revolution-for-father-modern.html

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