Monday, September 1, 2008

Grant Park [Eagle Fountains - by Frederick C. Hibbard]


Eagle Fountains..
Sculptor: Frederick Cleveland Hibbard.
Installed: 1931
Location: Grant Park - Congress Plaza Gardens ..
South Michigan Ave. (100 E) and E. Congress Pkwy. (500 S) .. Chicago, IL 60604 ..
A part of Chicago Public Art Program ..
On the north and south sides of the Congress Plaza are two circular fountains with bronze eagles. They eagles look ready to take flight with fish in their talons. Although the eagles look very realistic, their emphasis on verticality and stylized angular lines suggest the Art Deco style which characterized the fairgrounds.

Left is North side of Congress Plaza..
Right is South Side of the Congress Plaza

Not Identical!!!!
Most apparent different, North side Eagle has it's beak open while the south side has it closed!

In the comment section,  Frederick C. [who is the sculptor's grandson]  points out that the eagle on the north side is a Golden Eagle and on the south side is the Bald Eagle.
Frederick Cleveland Hibbard ... was a prominent sculptor of public works in Chicago. Born and raised in Canton, Missouri, Frederick Hibbard (1881- 1950) studied electrical engineering at several universities in Missouri and at the Armour Institute of Technology in Chicago. Soon after he began working as electrician, Hibbard decided that he wanted to become a sculptor. He enrolled at the School of the Art Institute, studying under the acclaimed artist, Lorado Taft and within a few years, he established his own sculpture studio in Chicago. Throughout his career, Hibbard produced over seventy works of permanent sculpture including two monuments to the Confederate president Jefferson Davis ..

Beautiful details
North Side of Congress Plaza

South Side of Congress Plaza



Ref: City of Chicago official Tourism Site .. Grant Park .. Click here ..

For more on Grant Park ..
# Public Art in the Grant Park .. click here ....
# Gardens in the Grant Park .. click here ..
# Often overlooked but remarkable features like pedestrian crossings, the railway lines underneath, the street lamp posts, balustrade, corbels, the Y-symbols .. click here ..
# For a brief history of Grant Park .. click here ..


Dave Sandell said...

I've never seen this before. Very cool - putting it on my to-do list for the summer.

FredC said...

Some my find this interesting: The eagle on the north side is a Golden Eagle and a Bald Eagle is on the south side. The original fountains had the water spurted out of the mouths of eight fish that were fairly large bronze sculptures. During the 1960s when there was vandalism and stealing of metals like bronze, the bronze fish were ripped out and stolen. The Park District turned the fountains off for years and did nothing. It is in more recent years that the eagle fountains were renovated with plain pipes spurting the water.
The cost of refurbishing the bronze is too much for the district, and they've simply painted older sculptures with a brown paint to protect the bronze. It considerably diminishes the look of bronze sculptures. You'll also notice that Ivan Mestrovic's Indians in the Congress Plaza are also painted with that brown paint. I don't know how many bronze sculptures in Chicago are painted like that.