The removal of the Unconditional Surrender statue commemorating the end of World War II from the Bayfront has been a controversial subject in Sarasota for many months. The good decision to keep it on the Bayfront was finally made and the move has been completed.
Its new home is in an area of Bayfront Park between O’Leary’s Tiki Bar and Grill and Marina Jack, away from planned road reconstruction to a park along Sarasota Bay. Most everyone is thrilled to be able to keep this work of art. Visitors from around the world have stopped to take their photo in front of the statue representing appreciation for the courageous nurses that cared for the soldiers. It just could not be taken away from the thousands of visitors and community residents.
History of Unconditional Surrender Statue
Here’s a little history about the sculpture that calls Sarasota home. Source: Wikepedia
Unconditional Surrender is a series of computer-generated sculptures by Seward Johnson that resemble a 1945 photograph by Alfred Eisenstaedt, V–J day in Times Square, but is said by Johnson to be based on a similar, less well known, photograph by Victor Jorgensen that is in the public domain.
- Artist: John Seward Johnson II
- Art form: Sculpture Aluminum, 25 feet tall.
- Originally displayed in Sarasota in 2005 as a temporary exhibit.
- Purchased by late World War II veteran and Sarasota resident Jack Curran from the Sculpture Foundation (now Seward Johnson Atelier) and loaned to the city for 10 years.
- Formally became part of the city’s public art collection in 2020.
- Cost of relocation is being funded by the city’s public art fund (which comes from developer contributions), the nonprofit Sarasota Public Art Fund and a donation from Marina Jack.
Quote from Congressman Vern Buchanan…
“Pleased to see the Unconditional Surrender statue in its new home just a few feet from its original location. Keeping it on the Bayfront was a BIG priority for veterans and many other area residents.”
Photo from Christine Baer