Does the West Coast need its own 'Statue of Liberty'?

Does the West Coast need its own 'Statue of Liberty'? »Play Video
A concept of what the Providence statue will look like. (Image courtesy statueofprovidence.org)

An Oregon man hopes to raise enough money to build a statue on the West Coast that would counterbalance the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast.  He plans to call it “Providence.” 

Jay Jarvie of Eagle Point, which is near Medford, is the artist behind the idea.  He hasn’t decided on or fully researched a location, but he hopes to build it in Oregon.

Eugene, for example, is geographically parallel to the Statue of Liberty.

“The best opportunity to find a city that would like to have it, willing to have it,” Jarvie said, “that we could either incorporate into the ownership of the city or something they’ll maintain because it will be a draw for their economic purposes, too, hopefully invite a lot of tourism into an area.”

Read more: Providence project website

The statue would have a similar stance to the Statue of Liberty but with different elements.  For example, the woman holds a sword in the air instead of a torch.  That sword, according to Jarvie, is supposed to symbolize authority.  There are a total of six elements with symbolism. 

“I don’t want it to be just another piece of art out there, I really want it to be symbolic,” Jarvie told KATU, “that man needs to extend himself into more service to other people.”

Jarvie announced his plans Thursday and hopes to start raising money Monday through Kickstarter.com.  He says that money will go toward a life scale model, and he eventually wants to raise a total of $10 million to build it within a couple of years.  He hopes the word about his idea spreads fast and causes a lot of reaction.

“The bigger the better,” Jarvie said.  “We’re not relying on anything but the public to fund it.”

He hopes to raise $35,000 in the next month to make an eight-foot version of the statue that he says is necessary for engineering purposes.

And Jarvie isn't the only artist who is dreaming big. A Utah artist also hopes to build a large "Statue of Responsibility" somewhere on the West Coast.

It would be as tall as the Statue of Liberty and depicts two hands holding each other.

The project's CEO says Portland is one of six potential host cities, so don't be surprised if we hear about this project again in the future. 

The men behind both projects also told us they wish each other well.