The LOVE Sculpture, also known as the LOVE Sign, has made history again, being the first of it’s kind commissioned in the state of Mississippi.
Designed by artist Robert Indiana, the original sculpture debuted in 1970 at the Indianapolis Museum of Art. Others have been constructed in major cities including New York, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and even internationally in regions such as Vancouver, Tokyo and Singapore.
Bringing the sign to Mississippi was the idea of the Burgess Family of Carthage. Robin Burgess said they would see art sculptures in other cities and always wish for something like this in the area. “I always felt if we had something unique, people would come to Carthage just to see it.” Her son’s tragic death two years ago by car accident was the catalyst. “After Blake died, I saw a LOVE art display dedicated to someone’s parents and it just clicked. I saw an opportunity to have something unique in our town and memorialize Blake. The LOVE sign just fit because Blake truly loved Carthage, people, and most of all, God.”
Mrs. Burgess obtained permission from the Art Society to duplicate the design. “When I told them the story of Blake they readily agreed to let us have one made. I went to the city board meeting with pictures of what I wanted to have built, and asked for permission to install it in the city. The Mayor and Board of Aldermen unanimously approved the motion. Then Cy Carter, a graduate from Carthage Christian Academy and owner of Carter’s Machine Works, built the sign. Billy Ellington painted the sign. And when he heard what the sign was for, he donated all the paint.”
“It’s really not about us, but about helping to make our town the best we can be. This is just one more thing Carthage can be proud of. We want this to remind people to LOVE each other. Love is something that everyone can give – both rich and poor, young and old. The world is a much better place when we choose to LOVE. When you love, you exemplify Christ in the greatest way,because no greater love hath any man than he lay down his life for his friends.”
The scripture engraved on the bottom of the sculpture says the rest: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.” 1 Corinthians 13:4
For More Information about Blake Burgess – Remembering Blake Burgess