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Pro Patria Mori
detail of mosaic and laser cut metal

Pro Patria Mori, 2006

Security Gates for the Liberty Memorial and Museum, Kansas City, Missouri

Selected by Public Art Network Year in Review as one of the best public art projects of 2006

These gates form an entrance to the Liberty Memorial and Museum in Kansas City Missouri, which houses the only collection of World War 1 artifacts in this country. When the gates are opened, they create an 80’ long panorama, when closed there are two separate panoramas, visible from both the approach to the site, and when leaving. The archives of the museum provide the main source for the glass mosaic imagery, along with images of my two grandfathers who fought in World War 1, and trench maps from their scrapbooks. Below the intricate mosaic frieze is a laser cut panel into which hundreds of holes have been cut to reveal an image taken from an archival photograph of soldiers walking in file across a hill. The title is from a famous poem by Wilfred Owen about the horrors of a poison gas attack. (all photos are by E.G. Schempf)