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The John Hooper statue, Timepiece, located outside of Market Square in Saint John. Image: City of Saint John/submitted

New Home Sought For ‘Timepiece’ Statue

By Brad Perry Jul 29, 2022 | 7:24 AM

An iconic wooden statue in uptown Saint John will not be returning to its home outside Market Square.

The John Hooper statue, Timepiece, was moved indoors over the winter to undergo restoration work.

Standing at 25 feet tall, the three-tiered column with wooden figures and a time mechanism was commissioned in 1983 as part of the construction of Market Square.

But after being exposed to the elements for 38 years and suffering vandalism in 2020, the late artist’s work was in need of some TLC.

The plan was to put the statue back outside of Market Square, but a staff report included in a recent council meeting agenda shows that is no longer the case.

“Due to the material used in the construction [of] the Timepiece, the age of the piece, and the climate of Saint John, both city staff and the Hooper family have made the decision to relocate the piece to an indoor location,” said the report.

According to the report, the city and Hardman Group initially agreed to relocate the statue to the Atrium of Market Square.

But Hardman Group, the lessee of Market Square, has since informed staff they are “no longer able to place Timepiece within their building,” said the report.

City staff, the Hooper family, and the Saint John Community Arts Board will now work together to find a public indoor location.

In the meantime, the statue is at Hooper Studios in Hampton, where it is being cleaned, repaired and restored.

The work, which will cost around $12,000, is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.

Another Hooper piece, People Waiting, has also been moved to an indoor storage location. Just like Timepiece, it will also undergo extensive restoration work and be moved to an indoor public location.


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