Over 1,000 people gathered in Washington Square Park yesterday afternoon, Saturday, November 14th to mourn the victims of Friday’s attacks on Paris. Mayor Bill de Blasio joined the vigil; a French flag was hung from the Arch and the structure was lit up in its colors of blue, white, and red. The Arch looked beautiful in color.
The Washington Square Arch was modeled after Paris’s Arc de Triomphe so it is particularly fitting that the vigil was held beneath it.
The lighting effects were created by artist Brian Tovar who wrote: “respond to violence with art and light. I am honored to have lit the Washington Square Park arch with the support of the most amazing team of friends and colleagues.”
The Arch will be lit again in the colors of the French flag tonight, Sunday, November 15th.
About The French Flag:
The French flag contains three vertical stripes of equal width. From the flagstaff to the end, these colors are blue, white, and red. More than 20 countries use these three colors in their flag, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
Via Newsweek, New York Mourns Paris Attacks in Washington Square Vigil:
New Yorkers gathered around the arch in Washington Square Park on Saturday to mourn those killed in a series of attacks by the Islamic State in Paris.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio attended the vigil around 2 p.m. after visiting the French Consulate, where a small memorial formed Friday evening after the attacks.
The City Hall clock tower will be lit blue, white and red in honor of those killed. The Freedom Tower spiral was lit in honor of the flag as well. The Empire State Building was turned off.
A vigil remained below the arch and on either side, including flowers, notes and messages of strength.
The arch will be lit up for all to see overnight.
And according to Gothamist:
Accompanied by French Ambassador Gerard Araud and Consulate General Bertrand Lortholary, de Blasio laid flowers by the arch. The mayor added, “The only answer to terrorism is to be resolute to not allow the terrorists to change who we are. We must refuse to be terrorized. We won’t change our democracy. We won’t change our values.”
During the lighting, there was talk around the park that this was the first time in its history that the Washington Square Park arch had been illuminated in anything but its usual white. Designed by Brian Tovar, the tricolor effect was achieved using spotlights as well LEDs at the bases and midpoints on each leg of the arch.
The designer, Brian Tovar, confirmed that the Arch will be lit again tonight.
Photo: Polly Mosendz/Newsweek