Statues have some importance in human history. Every great sculpture has some meanings, some history behind it. The artists have communicated through his art. These creations are generally full length. Statues have been created in many cultures from prehistory to the present. The oldest known statue is dating to 30,000 years ago.
Many statues are built to remember a historical event or a life of a famous person. Let’s look at some famous statues in the world
Statue of Liberty, New York, United States
The famous Statue of Liberty is located on the Liberty Island in Manhattan. Famous sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi commissioned this copper statue. On October 28, 1886, France dedicated this statue as a gift to the United States. It was given to celebrate the 100 years anniversary of the signing of the United States Declaration of Independence. This statue is a symbol of friendship, freedom and the view of a new world.
In the America’s struggle for independence against British, French took an important part as they helped America by providing arms, ships and a huge amount of money. This statue is also a welcoming icon for the immigrants to the US.
Christ The Redeemer, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
It is the largest Art Deco statue in the world and the 5th largest statue of Jesus in the world. It is 30 feet high excluding its 8 metres pedestal and 28 feet wide. The statue was constructed between 1926 and 1931 and it was located at the peak of the 700-metre Corcovado Mountain. It signifies that the son of God, Christ warmly receives everyone who comes to visit him. Christ The Redeemer is one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It was built by some fine artists and engineers like Gheorghe Leonida, Albert Caquot, Paul Landowski and Heitor da Silva Costa.
The Great Sphinx of Giza, Egypt
It is a limestone statue of a lion’s body with a human head. The Sphinx is the largest monolith statue in the world, the height of the statue is 20.22m and the width is 73.5m. The statue stands on the Giza Plateau on the west bank of the Nile in Giza. It is assumed that the Egyptians had built this oldest monumental figure during 2558-2532 BC. The statue is a symbol of wisdom and strength.
David Statue, Italy
The statue is built by one of the greatest artists of all time, Michelangelo. It is a 17-feet marble statue which represents the Biblical hero the ancestor of Jesus, David. The statue is placed in the Accademia Gallery in Florence in 1873. It is known as the one of the greatest masterpieces of Renaissance. The statue depicts he is calmly waiting for a war with a stone in one hand and a slingshot in other.
Moai, Easter Island
The Moai statues are monolithic human figures and are carved by the Rapa Nui public from the rocks from the year 1250 to 1500. There are around 1000 huge Moai statues. All Moai statues have oversized heads which are three-eighths of the full size of statues. The tallest Moai erected is called Paro. It was around 10m tall and weighed around 75 tonnes. The heaviest Moai ever erected weighs 86 tons and was incomplete. If the statue had been completed then it would be 21m tall and weights around 270 tons.
Olmec colossal heads, Mexico
These Olmec heads are one of the mysterious artworks of the world. These sculptures of Olmec Civilisation were made before 900BC, on the gulf coast of Mexico. The heads were constructed using one large basalt boulder. The Olmec were an ancient Pre-Columbian civilisation and this civilisation flourished probably from 1400 BC to 400 BC. It is assumed that the heads are the portrait of Olmec rulers. One head is different from the other and the helmet-like headdresses are adorned with distinctive elements. Till now, 17 such heads have been found. The tallest structure is 3.4 m high and the shortest is 1.47 m.
The Motherland Calls, Volgograd, Russia
The statue is also known as The Homeland-Mother is calling. It was built in honour of The Battle of Stalingrad. In 1967, it was declared as the largest statue of the world, 85m tall. It stands on the banks of river Volga. This statue is very important from an engineer’s point of view because of its complex posture with a sword raised high in the right hand and the left hand extended in a calling gesture. One has to take 200 steps to go up to the statue. 200 steps symbolises the 200 days of the Battle of Stalingrad.
The Thinker, Paris
The bronze sculpture was made by Auguste Rodin and depicts a life-sized nude man lost in a deep thought. The artefact was originally named “The Poet” and it was made to celebrate Dante Alighieri’s most celebrated poem ‘Divine Comedy’. It was built as an entranceway of a doorway which was Rodin’s ‘Gates of Hell’. The figure is about 186 cm high. He made the first part in the year 1880 but it was completed by the year 1904.
The Little Mermaid, Denmark
Little Mermaid is a bronze statue made by Edward Eriksen in Copenhagen, Denmark. It was based on the fairytale of the same name by Hans Christian Andersen. The statue sits on a rock in a harbour and it’s only 1.25m tall. Carl Jacobson of Carlsberg commissioned the statue as a gift to Copenhagen in 1909 and it was completed in August, 1913. Eriksen’s wife Eline Eriksen modelled for the statue.
Terrace of the Lions, Delos, Greece
The Delos Island is an important mythological, historical and archaeological site in Greece. Millions of years ago Delos was known as a holy place. It was the birthplace of Apollo and his twin sister Artemis. The people of Naxos dedicated the Terrace of the Lions to Apollo shortly before 600 BC. Originally it had 9-12 marble lions along with the Sacred Way. But only 5 lions are survived and fragments of other lions can be found. The originals are moved to the Delos Museum in 1999.
Manneken Pis, Belgium
This bronze statue of the 15th century and it served the purpose of distribution of drinking water. The statue depicts a baby urinating in a basin. Hieronimus Duquesnoy the Elder built this in 1619. The figure has been repeatedly stolen. The current statue dates from 1965. The original restored version is kept at the Maison du Roi/Broodhuis on the Grand Place.
Venus de Milos, Paris
Venus de Milos or Aphrodite of Milos is one of the most famous works of ancient Greek sculpture. The statue was created around 100 BC. It is supposed to depict the Greek goddess of love and beauty, Aphrodite. The inscription on its plinth suggests it was the work of Alexandros of Antioch. The Romans named it Venus de Milos as Aphrodite was known to them as Venus. In 1820, it was discovered on the island of Melos. Olivier Voutier, the French navy man who found the sculpture, never found her arms. Currently, the statue is on the display at the Louvre Museum in Paris.