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September 20, 2013

Sculptor visits refurbished work

Gloucester native and renowned sculptor Aristides Demetrios paid a surprise visit to the Sawyer Free Library recently and inspected the newly reconditioned “Sea Harvest,” a bronze fountain he created for the library’s entrance.

Commissioned by the library, the fountain features more than a dozen species of fish found in the waters off Gloucester. The fish are arranged as they would be found in the ocean, with the bottom feeders along the bottom and the top feeders at the top. Ninety gallons of water per minute circulate through more than a dozen spouts, and each stream is shaped differently as it comes out of the fish’s mouth.

The 4-foot tall fountain has provided a resting place for library patrons young and old since 1977, the year of its creation.

Demetrios has been creating sculpture, private and public, for four decades and his work has earned him great popular acclaim as well as numerous awards.

His mother, Virginia Lee Burton, was an author and illustrator of children’s books, including “Mike Mulligan and the Steam Shovel,” and “The Little House,” for which she won the prestigious Caldecott Prize.

His father, George Demetrios, was a prominent Lanesville artist well-known both for his sculpture and his teaching. He founded the George Demetrios School of Sculpture where his son, Aristides, actually studied for three years.

Aristides Demetrios, who now lives in California, was in town visiting family and was delighted to hear of the special displays the library had created to commemorate his mother’s August birthday, according to the library’s Beth Pocos.

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