Mythical beasts, warriors, cupids, and gods
Love is a common theme among the garden sculpture, most of which dates from the late 17th and early 18th centuries, although some are the works of twentieth-century American artists such as Anna Hyatt Huntington, the wife of Archer Huntington, Arabella’s only child by her first marriage. The 18th century limestone statues on each side of the North Vista depict characters from classical mythology and folklore. Each statue was originally matched to a stately palm. The baroque fountain at the end of the North Vista was shipped in 48 boxes with a total weight of 42 tons. The boxes filled an entire railway car when shipped from New York.
The tempietto by the Rose Garden is French, and the sculpture inside it, L’Amour captif de la Jeunesse, seems to be by or after a model by Louis-Simon Boizot. A male and female lion-dog guard the Japanese Garden, which, according to popular belief in China, protects the family’s physical welfare and spiritual life.
The bronzes on plinths outside the Library Exhibition Hall are French 17th century copies after the Antique, of exceptional quality. The most modern sculpture on the grounds is a tonal sculpture by Harry Bertoia, a promised gift of the Phillip and Muriel Berman Foundation.
Mr. Huntington personally decided on the exact location for each piece of garden statuary. Some of the statues were moved as many as three times until Huntington was satisfied.