Sculpture in Piedmont Park pays tribute to Nelson Mandela - Dallas News |

Sculpture in Piedmont Park pays tribute to Nelson Mandela

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Some metro Atlantans braved wet weather to pay their respects for a fallen civil rights icon at the Free Nelson Mandela sculpture in Piedmont Park on Thursday.

Mandela, 95, died Thursday in South Africa.

The Mandela sculpture in Piedmont Park was created in 1987 by artist David Hammons.  It's located about  50 yard inside the Charles Allen entrance into the park by 10th Street.  It consists of 12 feet iron bars topped with barbed wire radiating from a rock. It has an iron gate, which was padlocked when it was built because Mandela was still in prison and opened when he was freed.

"It shows either the entrance to the possibility of freedom for everybody, or his literal exit from Robben Island.

Some at the sculpture on the rainy night were old enough to remember Mandela's three decades of imprisonment, while others knew more of the historical figure than the man himself.

Mandela was ultimately released from prison and became South Africa's first black president.

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