The Balancing Act

In 1980, George Wallace was commissioned to make a bronze sculpture for the new family law court in Milton, Ontario. “The Balancing Act” provides an interesting comment on justice for anyone who approaches the building. The artist relates that “The Balancing Act” was made “when we learnt the R.C.M.P. had been misbehaving itself, and generally illustrates that justice is a risky business”. Here, the scales of justice symbol has been transformed into a dizzying balance on tightropes, where a mother, father and son are forced to assume extreme and dangerous positions in order to counter one another’s movements. Only a constant, frantic struggle maintains the equilibrium.
You cannot help but become aware of the discrepancy between the static, uninviting walls and the precarious movements of the three bronze figures. It is to be hoped that the institution housed behind this exterior can give essential aid to the ‘balancing act’ of this family unit.

Excerpt from Greg Peters’ Images of Vulnerability, Mosaic Press, 1983