Fountain of Time
Fountain of Time, or simply Time, is a sculpture by Lorado Taft, measuring 126 feet 10 inches in length. It is situated at the western edge of the Midway Plaisance within Washington Park in Chicago, Illinois, in the United States. The sculpture is a contributing structure to the Washington Park United States Registered Historic District, which is a National Register of Historic Places listing.
About Fountain of Time in brief
Fountain of Time, or simply Time, is a sculpture by Lorado Taft, measuring 126 feet 10 inches in length. It is situated at the western edge of the Midway Plaisance within Washington Park in Chicago, Illinois, in the United States. The sculpture is a contributing structure to the Washington Park United States Registered Historic District, which is a National Register of Historic Places listing. Time was constructed from a new type of molded, steel-reinforced concrete that was claimed to be more durable and cheaper than alternatives. It was said to be the first of any kind of finished work of art made of concrete. Before the completion of Millennium Park in 2004, it was considered the most important installation in the Chicago Park District. Time has undergone several restorations because of deterioration and decline caused by natural and urban elements. Although extensive renovation of the sculpture was completed as recently as 2005, the supporters of Time continue to seek resources for additional lighting, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation has nominated it for further funding. The Fountain of Time was funded by Benjamin Ferguson’s 1905 gift of USD 1 million, to a charitable trust formed to \”memorialize events in American History\”. Taft initially conceived a sculpture carved from granite; an alternative plan was to have it chiseled out of Georgia marble, which it is estimated would have cost USD 30,000 a year for five years.
The planned work was intended as part of a Midway beautification which was to include a stream, lagoons, and a series of bridges: a Bridge of Arts at Woodlawn Avenue,. A Bridge of Religion at the intersection of Ellis Avenue, anda Bridge of Science at Dorchester Avenue. As part of the plan, the two ends of the midway were to be connected by a canal in the deep depressions linkingLagoons in Jackson and Washington Parks. Taft’s initial commission was the creation of a full-sized plaster model of Fountain of time, under five,000 dollars per year. This would enable the 20-foot model to be evaluated in 1918. He eventually produced his full-scale plaster model, 100 feet in width peaking in the center with an equestrian warrior and a robed model of Father Time with a height of 20 feet. The installation of this model was delayed by Taft’s World War I service with the Y M.C. A corps of lecturers and entertainers, but was completed in 1920. The fountain’s water began running in 1920, but the sculpture wasn’t dedicated to the city until 1922. The work was created as a monument to the first 100 years of peace between the U.S. and the United Kingdom, resulting from the Treaty of Ghent in 1814. In 1907, Taft had won the first commission from the Ferguson Fund to create the Fountain of the Great Lakes at the Art Institute of Chicago. In 1913, he signed a contract for a USD 10,000 annual installment.