Location: 71st Street, mid-Park
Artist/Designer: Henry Baerer
Materials: Bronze, polished Barre granite
Funding: German-Americans of the Beethoven Mannerchoir
The bust of Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) in Central Park shows a man of wild passion and plentiful hair. A child prodigy, Beethoven was highly prolific in his compositions and is credited with marshaling in the Romantic era in Western music.
Musical performances in Central Park drew hundreds of fans in the late 1800s. The German-American Beethoven Mannerchoir often performed at the original Central Park bandstand (now gone). They had this bust erected to celebrate their 25th anniversary.
German- born Henry Baerer sculpted the memorial based on the work of another European sculptor, Hugo Hagen. Baerer captured the unbridled intensity of Beethoven’s creative genius. Sitting on a high pedestal, this bust celebrates Beethoven’s contributions to the world of music. Below stands an allegoric figure with a lyre. Similar statues appear in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park and in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park.
Ludwig van Beethoven
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