French Sculpture Census

crédits photo : ph Wikimedia Daderot, 19 mars 2014
© artiste : public domain

BARTHOLDI, Frédéric-Auguste
Colmar, Haut-Rhin 1834 - Paris 1904

Exécutant: Durenne

Fontaine de l'Eau et de la Lumière
Fountain of Water and Light

fonte de fer pour la fontaine et marbre pour le bassin

désignation : autre
fontaine : H. env. 914 (9,14 m) ; bassin : diam. env. 1066 (10,66 m)
plaque de dédicace devant la fontaine : The Bartholdi Fountain / This fountain was created by Frederic / Auguste Bartholdi / for the International / Centennial Exhibition in / Philadelphia in 1876, where it was placed at a focal point on / the grounds. It was illuminated with gas lights, / later replaced with electric globes. Painted to / look like bronze, the fountain was designed / in three identical sections with classical forms / and symbols. The aquatic monsters, shells, / fish, sea nymphs and youthful tritons all refer / to the ocean. The fountain was intended to / represent the elements water and light. / In 1877 the fountain was purchased / from Bartholdi by the United States / government and placed on the Botanic / Garden grounds, then located at the center of / the mall. The fountain, moved to its present / location in 1932, was restored in 1986.

Washington, D.C., District of Columbia, Outdoor sculpture


  • 1876, exposée à l'Exposition internationale centenniale de Philadelphie
  • 1877, achetée par le Congrès américain pour 6000 $
  • 1878, le Congrès commande la bassin en marbre pour 3000 $
  • 1878-1926, érigée à Washington, au pied de Capitol Hill
  • 1926-1932, retirée et mise en réserve pour permettre l'achèvement du George Meade Memorial et des améliorations paysagères autour du Grant Memorial
  • 1932, remise en place à son emplacement actuel, près du Jardin botanique


  • Save Outdoor Sculpture! website:, 31 May 2011
  • Save Outdoor Sculpture, District of Columbia survey, 1993
  •, accessed 15 January 2015
  • 1974 Goode
    James M. Goode, The Outdoor Sculpture of Washington, D.C., A Comprehensive Historical Guide, Washington, D.C., Smithsonian Institution Press, 1974, p. 250-251
  • 1978 Capitol
    Art in the United States Capitol, prepared by the Architect of the Capitol, under the direction of the Joint Committee on the Library, Washington, United States Government Printing Office, 1978, p. 352, ill.
  • 1999 Fontes
    publiée ds Fontes, avril 1999, n° 33
  • 2002 Washington Post
    Washington Post, Aug. 11, 2002, B-8


  • 1876 Philadelphia
    International Centennial Exhibition (International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures, and products of the Soil and Mine), Philadelphia, 10 May-10 November 1876