Boston Art Commission

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Brewer Fountain

Artist:

Paul Lienard

Location:

Boston Common, near Park St., Tremont St. and Temple Pl.  

Location

Boston Common, near Park St., Tremont St. and Temple Pl.
United States
42° 21' 22.2912" N, 71° 3' 47.16" W

Neighborhood:

Downtown

Type:

Sculptural fountain

Year:

1867

Medium:

Bronze and Granite

Collection:

City of Boston

Funders:

Unknown

Description:

Gardner Brewer purchased this fountain as a donation to the city after seeing it at a World’s Fair in Paris in 1867. The sculpture was first placed outside the Brewer home on Beacon Street and was moved to its current location a few years later. The fountain’s base features two couples from Greek mythology: the sea god Poseidon and his consort Amphitrite, and Acis and Galatea. In modern adaptations of an ancient Greek myth, Galatea is known as the statue who came to life after her sculptor, Pygmalion, fell in love with her. References to Greek and Roman myths can be found in much Neo-Classical art and architecture, which flourished during the 19th century.

The fountain has sustained much damage over the years. In 1957, one figure was torn from its base and knocked over during a treasure hunt for the key to a free automobile. Expecting to find the key somewhere in the Boston Common, eager crowds searched through the flowers and shrubs and among

the park’s many statues. Since then, the Brewer Fountain has since undergone extensive repairs to the stone basin and bronze figures, as well as the interior piping system.

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