Bergman’s ’76 Bas–Relief Adorns Massachusetts State House


The Massachusetts State House now hosts a bronze bas–relief sculpture by Meredith Gang Bergmann ’76 that honors slain labor leader Edward Cohen and the Massachusetts labor movement. The plaque, unveiled late in 2009, hangs just outside the governor’s office where Cohen was shot in 1907.


Bergmann drew stylistic inspiration both from the compositional ingenuity and energy of WPA murals and protest art from the elegant narratives of Renaissance bas–reliefs to organize this complex history. The helix of marchers includes 31 different events of organization and protest from 1834 to the present, and the sculpture includes more than 100 figures.


Labor leader Cohen is honored on a kind of plaque–within–the–plaque, as the events of his life and death are printed on a newspaper held up to view in the lower right corner.


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