If you have ever driven down Interstate 80, it’s hard not to notice the 80 ft. high, bright-red bronzed sculpture whenever you are arriving or leaving Roseville. Over the years, we’ve heard questions about what the sculpture represents and if it is just a sculpture of a rose, symbolizing the town of Roseville.
But is it true? And where did this striking monument even come from?
The sculpture, called “Cosmos,” was created by Aris Demetrios in 1990 and was dedicated to the people of Roseville by developer Angelo Tsakopoulos. The sculpture actually symbolizes unity, which shies away from the common misconception that Cosmos represents a “rose” for Roseville. There is even an urban myth that from an aerial view, the piece looks like a rose, however that is not the case.
Cosmos is located in the Cities Sculpture Park, right between Home Depot parking lot and I-80 freeway. It is also the trailhead for Miners Ravine bike trail. What many people do not know about Sculpture Park is that it also showcases a series of smaller concrete blocks which display bronze art created by school children. Each year, 3rd and 4th grade Roseville students participate in an art contest and work with their teachers to create clay sculptures representing animal or flower themes. Their creations are taken to the judges, and then the winning sculptures are cast in bronze and placed on permanent display in front of the Cosmos sculpture.
So next time you're driving down I-80 and the bright-red sculpture catches your eye, you’ll have some actual background knowledge on where Cosmos is really from and what it truly represents. But if you still want to think of it as a cool “flower” symbol of Roseville – that’s okay, too.