The Gene and Ruth Posner Foundation in Milwaukee unveiled a new sculpture outside of the Milwaukee Public Market Wednesday in memory of Jeffry Posner, the Posners' son, whose vision contributed to the development and revitalization of the Historic Third Ward.
A formal dedication ceremony for the sculpture, which stands about 15 feet high, will take place on Saturday at 10 a.m. Three dedications will be made to represent contributions and pledges of more than $2 million from the foundation to the community.
Jeffry Posner died of cancer in 1999 at the age of 57.
In addition to the dedication ceremony for the sculpture, the foundation will dedicate Jeffry Posner Park and along Jeffry Posner Way along the north side of Discovery World at Pier Wisconsin and then head north for a formal dedication of Posner Town Square at the Sarah Chudnow Campus in Mequon.
The artist who designed and created the sculpture is Richard Taylor, a Riverwest-based artist who also created two red alphabet-themed sculptures behind the Milwaukee Public Library on Wells Street.
The sculpture at the Milwaukee Public Market was donated in concert with a $100,000 donation the Gene and Ruth Posner Foundation made about one year and a half ago. Taylor designed the sculpture based on the words used by Jeffry's children and family members to describe him, Josh Gimbel, president of the Gene and Ruth Posner Foundation said. Jeffry Posner was one of the first people to move to the Third Ward in the early 1980s and lived in a condominium on the corner of Chicago and Milwaukee Streets. He was in the real estate development business, and his wife at the time, Judith, owned an art gallery on the first floor.
"The Milwaukee Public Market is another example of how the Third Ward has changed into a living center, a community center, that it wasn't back then," Gimbel said. "It used to be Commission Row with warehouses and industrial uses, and now all we see are restaurants and condos and stores."