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Published on : Thursday, February 14, 2013
A bronze version of Unconditional Surrender, the sculpture featuring a sailor kissing a nurse while celebrating the end of World War II, will soon be installed along the downtown waterfront as part of the Port of San Diego’s permanent public art collection.
The sculpture, known by its unofficial moniker “The Kiss,” has attracted immense public interest and support. The Port of San Diego will formally accept the sculpture from the USS Midway at a public event on Saturday, February 16, at 10 a.m.
A temporary foam and urethane version of “Unconditional Surrender”, which was created by New Jersey artist Seward Johnson, was loaned to the Port of San Diego beginning in 2007 and by popular demand was kept up much longer than originally scheduled, until 2012. The USS Midway Museum raised nearly $1 million to “save the kiss” with a durable bronze version, which has a painted finish like the original. The sculpture took about six months to construct. It is being installed this week at the Greatest Generation Walk along the downtown waterfront south of the USS Midway.
The sculpture site was prepared for the installation with new landscaping, walkways, Japanese friendship cherry trees, benches and lighting. The event, organized by the USS Midway, will include a performance by the U.S. Navy Southwest Band. Several couples married during World War II will renew their vows in front of the sculpture.
Source: Port of San Diego