On August 8, 2018, Marie Blevins Bradford, Executive Director of the Salem Carousel in Riverfront Park – wrote Mayor Chuck Bennett and Salem Public Arts Commission saying that the Carousel Board of Directors was “very interested in the possibility of incorporating the Salem Peace Mosaic into the plans for its new building, ‘The Stables’.”
Director Bradford’s letter to Mayor Bennett and the Commission followed a meeting of the Riverfront Carousel board with architects Alan Costic and Richard Rutherford of AC + Co, one of Salem’s leading architectural firms.
Bradford wrote that the “board believes the mosaic would be a beautiful asset that would be engaging for families coming to Riverfront Park. Our board voted unanimously to support the mosaic’s incorporation into its new building.”
The City of Salem is looking for a new home for the stunning, intricate Peace Mosaic. The Stables annex, currently in the conceptual design stage, is expected to have five-foot walls that would well suit the mosaic’s layout.
The Stables annex is needed to provide more space and visibility for Carousel carvers and painters.
This latest Carousel board action is part of a widening public awareness that Riverfront Park may be the best location for the Salem Peace Mosaic. Formally called the *River of Peace *and currently attached to the outer wall of the Salem YMCA, the artwork is a 300 square foot mosaic masterpiece by the Japanese-American artist Lynn Takata. It is a collage of color, field tiles, cast glass, and detailed imagery created from firing, glazing, hollowing out clay, making patterns and materials. Other examples of Takata’s exquisite work can be found in Portland, Chicago and Minneapolis.
Comprised of over 26,000 pieces, the estimated cost to replicate the *River of Peace* mosaic is about $120,000, not including the additional time that was contributed by over 600 community volunteers.
In spring 2019, the Salem YMCA is scheduled to begin demolition of the building where the mosaic currently resides.