A local artist competing to design a War of 1812 monument for Parliament Hill says he's in the dark about what's happening with the contest.

The Department of Canadian Heritage, through the National Capital Commission, had announced a public unveiling of six competing designs for the new monument for Mar. 7, but the event was cancelled last week.

David Clendining of Lac Des Loups, Que., one of six finalists who have submitted designs, said he's still waiting to hear when the unveiling will be rescheduled. 


A preliminary sketch of Clendining's design for a monument for War of 1812. (Stuart Mills/CBC)

"I've talked to the NCC to find out what's going on and they don't seem to know, either," said Clendining.

A spokesperson for the Heritage Minister said that "logistical details" caused the cancellation and that a new date would be announced within a day or two.

Project likely to dominate year for artist chosen

Clendining, a sculptor whose gargoyles adorn the Peace Tower, also has created bronze plaques, busts, and monuments scattered throughout the National Capital.

He can't reveal the finished submission, but his early sketches suggest a passionate, gothic and monumental scene of an immense scale, with a 27-tonne slab of granite and nine bronze figures each in a heroic pose.

He said should his design be chosen, the project would likely take a year to a year-and-a-half to complete.

"I've put the brakes on everything else. Although it doesn't pay very well, it's a great job... to try to give to Canada the very best that I could do," he said.