Fountain of the Great Lakes

Fountain of the Great Lakes


title = Fountain of the Great Lakes
artist = Lorado Taft
year = 1907-1913
type = Bronze
height =
inch = 264
city = Chicago, IL
museum = Art Institute of Chicago (outdoor)

"Fountain of the Great Lakes" is a sculpture by Lorado Taft in the Art Institute of Chicago South Stanley McCormick Memorial Court south of the Art Institute of Chicago Building in the Loop community area of Chicago in Cook County, Illinois, United States. It is bronze work of art created between 1907-1913. The fountain is Taft's response to Daniel Burnham's complaint at the Columbian Exposition in 1893 that the sculptors charged with ornamenting the fairgrounds failed to produce anything that represented the great natural resources of the west, especially the Great Lakes.cite web|url=|accessdate=2007-06-07|publisher=Great Lakes Commission|title=Fountain of the Great Lakes] The fountain depicts five women arranged so that the water flows through them in the same way water passes through the Great Lakes. [Sinkevitch, Alice, "AIA Guide to Chicago" (2nd edition), p. 41, 2004, Harcourt Books, ISBN 0-15-602908-1.] Note that the Great Lakes waterflow starts in Lake Superior at Ft to m|600 above sea level and continues eastward through each lake until it reaches Lake Ontario and then passes into the St. Lawrence River. [cite web|url=|accessdate=2007-06-07|title=Great Lakes System|author=Foust, Jerry L. |work=Electronic Encyclopedia of Chicago|year=2005|publisher= Chicago Historical Society] The Fountain is one of Tafts best known works.

The fountain was originally installed facing south where it remained until 1963 when it was moved next to the Morton Wing addition facing west where it sits today. In its original location it was visible from the Jackson and Michigan Avenue intersection once known as "route center" to the south. [cite web|url=|accessdate=2007-06-07|title=Route Center: Jackson and Michigan Boulevards Circa 1907-1923|publisher=David G. Clark|date=2004] The fountain was commissioned by Benjamin Ferguson and one surface references the title "B. F. Ferguson Fountain of the Great Lakes" (see picture to the left). There is a relief sculpture of Benjamin Ferguson on the rear panel that has been hidden from view since the fountain was moved (see picture below left). [cite web|url=|publisher=Brainsnack Tours|accessdate=2007-06-15|title=Fountain of the Great Lakes, Art Institute (1913)]


External links

: [ Encyclopedia of Chicago 1929 image] (before more recent building additions)

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