In Perpetuity

Part of Monument Lab

In Perpetuity by Duane Linklater, at Penn Treaty Park. Photo by Steve Weinik.

  • location Penn Treaty Park
  • Neighborhood

    Fishtown / Kensington

  • completion date

    November 20, 2017

In Perpetuity by Duane Linklater at Penn Treaty Park. Completed 2017. Photo by Steve Weinik.

About the Project 

Duane Linklater’s In Perpetuity served as a monument to Lenni Lenape Chief Tamanend. It was also a historical reference point to understand the broad erasure of Indigenous people from the lands that now include the city of Philadelphia. The artwork was installed on the banks of the Delaware River, on ground that has served as a meeting place for Indigenous communities for thousands of years. In 1682, William Penn and Chief Tamanend met to secure a “treaty of friendship.” The scope of the Lenape’s agreement, according to historical accounts, was meant to last “as long as the rivers and creeks flow, and the sun, moon, and stars shine.” Linklater, an Omaskêko Ininiwak from Moose Cree First Nation, asked his nine-year-old daughter, Sassa, to handwrite these words. He then worked with Philadelphia-area neon fabricators to reproduce the phrase in a neon sign on the edge of the river in order to mark the enduring legacy of the Lenape people and the unraveling of a treaty intended to promote long-standing coexistence.


Major support for Monument Lab projects staged in Philadelphia’s five squares provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage. An expanded artist roster and projects at additional neighborhood sites made possible by the William Penn Foundation. Lead corporate support provided by Bank of America. Generous additional support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.

For a full list of funders click here.