Memorial service planned for Winnipeg sculptor

A public memorial service will be held Friday evening for world-renowned Winnipeg sculptor Leo Mol, who died just over a week ago at 94.

A public memorial service will be held Monday evening for world-renowned Winnipeg sculptor Leo Mol, who died just over a week ago at 94.

The service will be held in the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden in Assiniboine Park.

There will be memorial books at entrances to the garden, and visitors can bring lawn chairs, because the service may last as long as an hour, according to Brenda Bracken-Warwick, executive director of Partners in the Park.

The service is scheduled to start at 7 p.m., and Manitoba Premier Gary Doer is expected to say a few words.

"I think it's in a place that [Mol] absolutely loved, and was very pleased the garden was created," Bracken-Warwick said.

"In gifting his works to the city of Winnipeg, it was very, very important to him. So I think the fact that the service is being held there reflects the wishes that he [had] and his wife has," she said.

More than 300 of his works — bronze and ceramic sculptures, paintings and drawings — are displayed in the sculpture garden, which was unveiled in 1992 and has been expanded twice since.

Born in Ukraine in 1915 as Leonid Molodozhanyn, Mol studied sculpture at the Leningrad Academy of Arts from 1936 to 1940 and in The Hague in 1943. He and his wife, Margareth, emigrated to Winnipeg in 1948.