Guglielmo Marconi (Piccirilli)

Guglielmo Marconi is a public artwork by Attilio Piccirilli, located at the intersection of 16th and Lamont Streets, N.W., in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood of Washington, D.C., United States. It stands as a tribute to Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi.[2] It was paid for by public subscription and erected in 1941. The artwork was listed on both the District of Columbia Inventory of Historic Sites and the National Register of Historic Places in 2007. It is a contributing property in the Mount Pleasant Historic District.[3] The monument was originally surveyed as part of the Smithsonian's Save Outdoor Sculpture! survey in 1994.[2]

Guglielmo Marconi Memorial
Guglielmo Marconi Memorial
Guglielmo Marconi (Piccirilli) is located in Washington, D.C.
Guglielmo Marconi (Piccirilli)
LocationReservation 309A,
16th and Lamont Streets NW
Washington, D.C.
Coordinates38°55′56″N 77°2′13″W / 38.93222°N 77.03694°WCoordinates: 38°55′56″N 77°2′13″W / 38.93222°N 77.03694°W
Built1941
ArchitectAttilio Piccirilli (sculptor)
Joseph Freedlander (architect)
Architectural styleArt Deco
NRHP reference #07001057[1]
Added to NRHPOctober 12, 2007

Description

The sculpture features two bronze pieces. In the front is a bust of Marconi (approx. 40 x 30 x 16 in.) which sits on a rectangular Stony Creek granite base (approx. 95 x 32 x 18 in.).[4] Behind the bust is the second bronze resting on another granite base (approx. 95 x 72 x 36 in.). The second bronze is an allegorist female figure sitting on a globe with her legs stretched out behind her. She points her proper left arm straight in front of her while her proper right arm is raised and bent at the elbow. She is naked with a small piece of drapery on her lap. According to Piccirilli she is "the Wave", representing "Marconi's contribution to science..."[4]

The base housing the Marconi bust features the inscription on the proper left side:

Attilio Piccirilli 1940.

On the same base's rear:

ERECTED BY POPULAR SUBSCRIPTION
AND PRESENTED TO THE CITY OF WASHINGTON
THE MARCONI MEMORIAL FOUNDATION
1940

On the front of the base:

MARCONI
1874-1937.[2]

The statue is not without association to fascist art, since Marconi was strongly identified with Italian fascism, and Piccirilli's subsequent work at the Rockefeller center in New York was criticized for using language appropriated by Mussolini.[5]

Gallery

Guglielmo Marconi Front

Front

Guglielmo Marconi Female Detail Front

Detail

Guglielmo Marconi Back

Back

Guglielmo Marconi Detail Bust

Bust detail

Acquisition

The fund for the memorial was begun a year after Marconi's 1937 death. The total sculpture cost after completion was $32,555.[2]

See also

References

  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  2. ^ a b c d Save Outdoor Sculptures! (1994). "Guglielmo Marconi (sculpture)". SOS!. Smithsonian. Retrieved 14 July 2010.
  3. ^ "District of Columbia Inventory of Historic Sites" (PDF). DC Preservation. Retrieved 2011-11-08.
  4. ^ a b Kelly, Edward. The Memorial to Marconi. The Scientific Monthly, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1942, p. 92-95.
  5. ^ "ADVANCE FOREVER ETERNAL YOUTH by Attilio Piccirilli". artnet.com. Retrieved 3 May 2015.

External links

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