Video – LCol Charles-Michel d'Irumberry de Salaberry (artist version) - Decoding ART - Heritage Monuments

Transcript

Transcript of LCol Charles-Michel d’Irumberry de Salaberry (artist version)

[Canadian Heritage signature]

Narrator: "This capsule is presented by Canadian Heritage."

[Portrait of Marlene Hilton Moore]

Narrator: "I am Marlene Hilton Moore, the artist who created the sculptures of 14 great Canadians for the Valiants Memorial."

[The bronze statue of Charles-Michel d’Irumberry de Salaberry]

Narrator: "The work of a sculptor requires great skill and intuitive response — especially when it involves re-creating a key moment in the history of a man as important as Lieutenant Colonel Charles de Salaberry. Not to mention the fact that the sculpture would include the most minute details — and nearly two hundred years after his lifetime."

[Close-up of the head]

Narrator: "For this work, I consulted with the best historians and curators specialized in Canadian military heritage. From what they told me about him, he was a model of strength, vitality, cleverness and loyalty. I decided to depict him in 1813, the year of his victory in the Battle of Châteauguay, when he was 35 years old."

[Illustration of de Salaberry defending the Chateauguay River]

Narrator: "Charles-Michel d’Irumberry de Salaberry was born into a seigneurial family in Beauport, Quebec."

[Close-up of the head]

Narrator: "His European ancestors had earned their titles of nobility on the battlefields. Salaberry enlisted in the British army at the age of 14, and later served in the West Indies, Netherlands, Sicily, Ireland and finally Canada. He was in charge of defending the border between Lower Canada and the United States during the War of 1812."

[Front view of the head]

Narrator: "Relying on the strength of his military experience, he used the terrain to his advantage and, with his Voltigeurs canadiens, repulsed the attacking American forces, which greatly outnumbered his troops. This victory prevented Lower Canada from falling into American hands. He was seen as a hero, and became one of the most respected soldier of his time."

[Portrait of de Salaberry]

Narrator: "To create the portrait of the sculpture, with his eyes and head raised slightly to give him a certain air of authority. I used the 1824 engraving of the Lieutenant Colonel. Inspired by the pose of a military man from that time period, I cast the body of a live model, posed in an authoritative stance."

[Portrait of de Salaberry, view from top to bottom]

Narrator: "In my unique process, I then used this cast as a mannequin, which I dressed with reproductions of the official uniform and other artifacts."

[Close-up of the cast view from top to bottom]

Narrator: "Even the smallest detail has special significance for this military uniform. The complex 'frogs' — or ornamental braiding — that appear on the front and back of his jacket are specific to the uniform that Salaberry wore."

[Close-up of his jacket, hat and epaulettes]

Narrator: "His striking bicorne hat — with its cockade, the strip of material pleated into a circular shape, and the braided cord joining the two buttons — is worn just slightly turned to one side to facilitate the view. The epaulettes were created using a photo of Salaberry’s own epaulettes. The medal, the Companion of the Order of the Bath, which was the third highest order of British chivalry, I carefully reproduced, cast in wax and then in bronze. It was placed exactly where the Lieutenant Colonel proudly wore it during his lifetime. This medal, as well as the epaulettes, still belong to Salaberry’s descendents."

[The statue, view from the bottom to the top]

Narrator: "The sculpture of Salaberry took several months to create, from the complex clothing to the sensitively sculpted portrait which reveals the living man. The proud face and his hands were sculpted in clay, assembled on the sculpture, and all was prepared in wax for casting in bronze. This unique process allowed me to reproduce the finest details in terms of different textures on the sculpture: from the weave of the cloth, to the smooth texture of the leather belt, to the fine detail of the trim. The statue is set on a base of granite, a very noble material, worthy of someone such as Lieutenant Colonel de Salaberry."

[Canada Wordmark]

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