Glasgow - City of Sculpture
By Gary Nisbet
Saracen Fountain
Details:

Manufacturer: Walter Macfarlane & Co (fl. 1849-1965)
Designer: David Watson Stevenson (1842-1904)
Location: Alexandra Park, Glasgow
Date erected: 1901 (Kelvingrove International Exhibition)
Date relocated: 1914 (Alexandra Park)


Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
Commissioned from D W Stevenson as Macfarlane's principal exhibit at the 1901 International Exhibition at Kelvingrove Park, the fountain was gifted to the city by Walter Macfarlane and eventually relocated to Alexandra Park in 1914 (the pavement inscription erroniously gives the date 1916).

Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
The fountain's central tower is loosely based on the Choragic Monument of Lysicrates in Athens (of 334 BC). The four seated, classical maidens on the pedestals around its base were cast from Stevenson's models for the bronze figures around his statue to John Platt in Oldham, of 1878. The figures represent Literature (with a book on her lap); Science (holding a retort); Art (with a theatrical mask and lyre) and Commerce (seated on a ship, replacing Engineering in the Oldham group).

Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
The figures are flanked by arches decorated with seashells and large, lion mask waterspouts. The sides of the pedestal incorporate paired reliefs of the signs of the Zodiac.

Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
Tiny cherubs ring the upper basin and spout water from flutes. The crowning feature comprises four, entwined dolphin waterspouts.

Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow
Restored to working order in 2000, the fountain's blue and gold livery is approximate to its 1901 colour scheme, although for many years it was painted white and gold.

Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow Saracen Fountain, Alexandra Park, Glasgow

Click on an image to enlarge it.

Click here to return to the top.

All images and biographies are our copyright and may not be reproduced
in any form whatsoever without our express permission.

Home Page |  Sculpture Database |  Sculptors & Designers |  Architects, Builders & Foundries |  Quick Tour
Acronyms |  Glossary |  Bibliography |  Useful Links |  About Us |  Privacy Policy |  Copyright |  Contact Us
Our visitor count: from 1st Jan 2002
For sculpture and architecture: we have over 300 biographies of sculptors and architects connected with Glasgow, Scotland.

 
© 2001-2017 glasgowsculpture.com