(Photo: Mark Henle/The Republic)
Why is this man smirking?
Because he's about to become Arizona's latest (and second) contribution to the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall. It's a Barry Goldwater revival!
I always feel sorry for modern sculptors who have to make men in glasses and business suits look artistic. That said, I think the sculptor, Deborah Copenhaver-Fellows, did a very good job. She's livened up the pose by putting one of Barry's hands in his pocket, the other gesticulating as if making a point, and rather than standing stock-still, the figure's weight is shifted to the left leg, with the right leg stepped almost casually forward. It's a nice contrapposto.
And believe it or not, I'm giving a thumbs-up to the bolo tie. It's a specifically Arizonan detail (it's the official state neckwear). And what is the bolo design? It appears to be a variation of a Native American thunderbird. Perfect choice for the hoary old warmonger.
Interesting that Arizona would choose a figure who was soft on abortion and gay rights, and antagonistic towards the religious right, but who else have they got? Somehow I can't picture Mo Udall making the cut in today's Arizona.