‘It became an anchor’: Friendship sculpture rescued from rubble following Fox Elementary fire

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 6:45 PM EDT|Updated: May. 24, 2022 at 7:05 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Inside Clark Springs Elementary School, students from Fox Elementary School may notice a familiar piece of art inside their temporary school.

The “Friendship” sculpture is anchored inside the school, sharing decades of memories from when it was created in the 1980s.

“These portraits on the ship and the standing children were done by children in the school under Jack Glover’s tutelage,” said Paul DiPasquale, a local artist. “He was a resident artist hired by Barbara Gray, who was a principal at the time.”

DiPasquale knows the history behind the sculpture and said Glover and Gray pulled him into projects in Fox and other schools.

“This kind of thing where children’s art is recognizable by other children as children’s art reinforces self-confidence,” DiPasquale said. “The history of this ship, because it’s always been in the lobby, is meaningful to generations of people, including me.”

This sculpture was inside Fox Elementary School when flames tore through the building in February, but the sculpture survived the flames and was rescued from the rubble.

The ship was cleaned and transported to Clark Springs Elementary School through insurance money. With the sculpture in place, DiPasquale hopes this piece will make a difference for the Fox family in their temporary school.

“It’s really delightful to see it back here,” DiPasquale said.

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