By John King Tarpinian: On January 29 there was the unveiling of an 8’ bronze statue dedicated to Ray Bradbury and his stories. Ray had dubbed the statue, Father Electrico. The patrons who have purchased the statue for their front yard call him, The Illustrated Man.
The statue is of a man carrying a boy. The man represents Ray’s father with the boy being Ray. When Ray was ten his father carried the exhausted Ray home from the circus.
On the back of the statue are 3-D reliefs inspired by Ray’s stories. You can see depictions of spacemen destined for Mars, firemen getting ready to burn books, The April witch, Lions from The Veldt and much more. The vines represent how Ray weaved together short stories into the “novels” The Martian Chronicles and The Illustrated Man.
The evening was attended by many of Ray’s fans and close friends. A gaggle of Ray’s theatrical actors were in attendance. Even Captain Beatty made an appearance in the guise of character and voice actor Michael Prichard. Prichard played Captain Beatty in Ray’s last two theatrical productions of Fahrenheit 451. Of course, the majority of the attendees were true patrons of the arts.
We were treated to a demonstration of the bronzing process. I cannot do justice in describing the process but suffice it to say it was very impressive.
If you are interested in the artist, Christopher Slatoff, here is a link to his website and better images of the statue. If anybody is interested, miniatures of the statue are going for only $20,000.00.