Middle School Visual Arts teacher Karen Eutemey is part of a public art project that received funding from the City of Boston Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture to complete the Edward O. Gourdin and African American Veterans Memorial artwork.
Karen created ten bas-relief portraits of African American veterans of wars from the American Revolution to the Iraq War that are part of the community-initiated public art project, which features a bronze memorial portrait of Justice Gourdin by fellow sculptor Fern Cunningham Terry.
The City of Boston has allocated $150,000 in capital funds to close the funding gap slowing the completion of the project.
The long-deferred installation honors Edward Orval “Ned” Gourdin (1897–1966), jurist, veteran, athlete, and civil rights activist, who was the first African American and the first Native American (Seminole) to be appointed a Superior Court judge in New England. Gourdin was colonel of the 372nd Infantry Regiment during World War II, and commandant of the 272nd during the Korean War, the last segregated military unit in the United States. Gourdin Park, located in the heart of Roxbury’s Dudley Square, will become a memorial to the African American veterans of Massachusetts who served in all wars.
Karen, who is a sculptor, has been teaching at DCD since 2019. She received her BFA from Boston University and completed graduate study at Mass College of Art. She has completed a number of public and private sculpture commissions including “Rise-Gateway to Boston” in Mattapan Square in 2005, a public commission.