NORTH CANTON  Visitors and residents at the Sanctuary Grande senior living facility in North Canton will now be greeted by a 14-foot sculpture named "Generations" when pulling into the parking lot. The new sculpture was installed on June 20 and was introduced to residents and the community at ceremony on June 22.

Local artist Patrick Buckohr created the sculpture. The idea for the sculpture came from the owners, Bill Lemmon and Bob Dehoff. Lemmon told the group of people assembled at the ceremony that they were thinking of putting a fountain in front of the Sanctuary Grande.

"We thought about a fountain but a fountain can only be enjoyed half of the year, so we decided to do a search for an artist to create a sculpture that would represent senior living," Lemmon said.

Marketing Coordinator Debbie Hajba said M.J. Albacete, executive director emeritus of the Canton Museum of Art, helped complete the state-wide search for the right artist. Each of the 12 artists who responded produced drawings and proposals. She said the drawing from Buckohr represented the message that Bill Lemmon Bob Dehoff wanted to communicate.

"After the drawing and the artist were selected, the facility asked residents and staff from the Danbury office to help name the piece and then Bill selected the name 'Generations' from the list that was compiled," Hajba said. "The feedback from residents has been great. The sculpture lights up at night and the residents have loved seeing it from their windows."

The sculpture has two adults lifting a child up over their heads. The child is holding three balloons. Buckohr made the sculpture of steel and glass. There are 799 steel rings holding 797 bottoms of glass bottles. The glass bottoms are different colors and when lit, give the appearance of clothing on the couple and the child and give color to the balloons. 

Buckohr said he likes his art to tell a story and the "Generations" sculpture tells the story of one generation lifting up another generation to carry on with life and tradition.

"I like my art to be whimsical and tell a story, this piece tells the story of grandparents swinging a grandchild in the air as they are passing on their experiences to a new generation" Buckohr said. "Plus, I wanted to create a piece that I would want to see every time I pulled into the parking lot."

Sanctuary Grande used a crane to lift and place the 2,500-pound sculpture at the front entrance of the facility.