Lions Gate Bridge lion maquette
Peggy Imredy, who studied Vancouver sculpture, donated this maquette to the Museum of Vancouver in 1983. This plaster model is one of two studies in the museum’s collection that preceded the final concrete sculptures that flank the southern entrance of the Lions Gate Bridge in Stanley Park. The use of plaster affords this study piece a more delicate appearance and heightened sense of realism than the concrete of the streamlined, art deco-style felines flanking the bridge. In 1939, the lions were hoisted onto the large pylons on which they rest, heralding opportune times ahead. At 6.5 tonnes each, the enormous sculptures imparted a sense of stability to suspension bridge. In her book “A Guide to Sculpture in Vancouver” Mrs. Imredy features the Lions and notes that the sculptor would have preferred to use bronze or stone but for budgetary reasons was limited to concrete.