Law, Prosperity, and Power (1880)

by Daniel Chester French (1850 - 1931)

Photo Caption: Photo Alec Rogers © 2014 for the Association for Public Art
  • Title

    Law, Prosperity, and Power

  • Artist

    Daniel Chester French (1850 - 1931)

  • Year

    1880, installed 1882, relocated 1939

  • Location

    South George's Hill Drive, north of Mann Music Center

  • Medium

    Marble, on concrete base

  • Dimensions

    Height 15'10", width 16', depth 5' (base height 3', width 5'7", depth 5')

  • Themes

    Women and Public Art, Political Public Art

Commissioned for the U.S. Post Office and Federal Building in Philadelphia

Owned by the City of Philadelphia

At A Glance

  • Please note that the grounds of the sculpture are enclosed and additional access can be acquired by contacting the Mann Music Center, info@manncenter.org

  • Among Artist Daniel Chester French’s early commissions were lofty allegorical works that described the functions of federal buildings

  • Law, Prosperity, and Power idealized the government in a lyrical form and material—marble

  • After the U.S. Post Office and Federal Building was destroyed, the sculpture was relocated to Fairmount Park with the help of the Fairmount Park Art Association (now the Association for Public Art)

Daniel Chester French was born in Exeter, New Hampshire, a member of an established New England family. When he was 23 years old, he created a highly praised Minute Man for Concord, Massachusetts. After completing his studies in Europe, French received a number of federal commissions.

Law, Prosperity, and Power sculpture in Fairmount Park
Photo Alec Rogers © 2014 for the Association for Public Art

Among French’s early commissions were lofty allegorical works that described the functions of federal buildings. Law, Prosperity, and Power, commissioned for the U.S. Post Office and Federal Building in Philadelphia, idealized the government in a lyrical form and material – marble – inspired by the artist’s sojourn in Florence. When the building was destroyed in 1937, the work was given to the city and relocated to Fairmount Park with the help of the Fairmount Park Art Association (now the Association for Public Art).

French is best known in Philadelphia for his statue of General Ulysses S. Grant, a later work in the artists’s mature style.

Adapted from Public Art in Philadelphia by Penny Balkin Bach (Temple University Press, Philadelphia, 1992).

 

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