This week, the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park opens on Roosevelt Island with a dedication ceremony on Oct. 17. It will be hosted by Tom Brokaw, and former president Bill Clinton will join Mayor Bloomberg to help inaugurate the space. The “focal point” of the park is a sculpture portrait of Roosevelt by Jo Davidson.
Roosevelt sat for the portrait during his first term, in 1933. Among some of Davidson’s other subjects were Albert Einstein, Helen Keller, Mother Jones, Charlie Chaplin, James Joyce and Gertrude Stein. Roosevelt’s mother suggested Davidson make the portrait, and he was given essentially unlimited access to the president.
The park is located at the southern tip of Roosevelt Island. It was designed by the late Louis I. Kahn.