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Photo: John Raleigh

Art in the Round

The animals on Boston’s newest carousel were turning around in the mind of sculptor Jeff Briggs, A71, long before they appeared on the Rose Kennedy Greenway late last summer. His task was to reproduce animals found in New England. They had to be lifelike, but they also “had to be rideable, had to be mountable,” he says.

The lobster, a spiky beast in nature, required some smoothing out for tots. The harbor seal was intended as an accessible, chariot-type ride, and Briggs wondered if a real seal could bend its body enough to provide back support. A visit to the New England Aquarium reassured him that it could.

These characters joined a grasshopper (based on the weather vane atop Boston’s Faneuil Hall), a peregrine falcon, a skunk, a whale, and eight other local fauna. The finishing touch for each was a bright, kid-pleasing paint job by a collaborating artist. “It’s nothing if it doesn’t have color,” Briggs says. Watch the carousel take shape at bit.ly/art-round.

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