Encyclopedia Titanica


New York Times

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With Evarts Tracy, Architect, Sculptor Wins in Contest Including 59 Designs
Four Other "Next Best" Designs Get Prize Money from $500 Down to $100 Each
From a collection of fifty-nine models submitted by different artists in the competition for a design for a memorial fountain to be erected in Straus Park, 106th Street, Broadway, and West End Avenue, in honor of
the late Mr. and Mrs. Isidor Straus, who perished on the Titanic, the jury representing the Memorial Committee and the National Sculpture Society announced yesterday that it had selected the design of
Augustus Lukeman, sculptor, 145 West Fifty-fifth Street, and Evarts Tracy, architect 244 Fifth Avenue. The memorial fountain is to be erected at a cost of $20,000 and it is to be executed in granite and bronze.

The plot on which the fountain is to be erected is triangular in shape, bounded on the west by West End Avenue, on the south by 106th Street, intersecting West End Avenue at right angles, and on the east by Broadway. The competitors were at liberty to give the plot any treatment they chose, and the result was that the winning design followed closely the shape of the triangle.

In his design Lukeman has conceived of a basin occupying the centre of the triangle, and on the south end of the basin a low pedestal about 4 feet in height, on which a figure reclines as though looking into the

In the rules for the competition the committee had specified that the design should, in a manner, reflect the unostentatious but purposeful character of the citizens to whose memory it was to be erected and that any features that might be termed loud or spectacular should be avoided. It was further required that the fountain
should primarily present an object of beauty, without necessarily containing an allegorical expression of any particular theme or subject. The competitor was to provide in his design a panel or device on which there might be an inscription setting forth the fact that the fountain was erected in memory of the late Mr. and Mrs. Isidor Straus, citizens in high esteem in the community, who lost their lives in the disaster which befell the passengers and crew of the steamer Titanic.

The competition was under the auspices of the National Sculpture Society, 215 West Fifty-seventh Street, and the competitors were required to deliver their designs on March 12 or 13. The Committee on Award consisted of Herbert Adams, Henry Bacon, Karl Bitter, representing the National Sculpture Society, and Felix M. Warburg and Capt. Joseph B. Greenhut, with Supreme Court Justice Samuel Greenbaum as alternate, representing the Memorial Committee. The Committee will make its report to the Memorial Committee on or before March 25, and the installation of the design will be under the direction of a committee not connected with the Committee on Award or the Memorial Committee, or otherwise interested in the competition.

The contract is to be let for the actual design of the fountain to the successful contestant, providing the Art Commission approves, and for his work as a sculptor, designer, and modeler he is to get $10,000.

For the next best designs submitted in the competition the committee made these awards:

Second Prize, $500---Henry Hering, sculptor, 118 East Twenty-eighth Street, and Charles A. Platt, architect, 11 East Twenty-fourth Street.

Third Prize, $300---Anton Schaaf, sculptor, 1,931 Broadway, and Albert R. Ross, architect, 16 East Forty-second Street.
Fourth Prize, $200---Furio Piccirilli, sculptor, 467 East 142d Street, and Lord & Hewlett, architects, 345 Fifth Avenue.

Fifth Prize, $100---Harriet W. Frishmuth, sculptor, 35 Park Avenue; Alexander Deserty, Harold M. Bowdoin, architects, 507 Fifth Avenue.

The models are now on exhibition in the rooms of the National Sculpture Society. The committee issued this statement:

"To make a selection out of fifty-nine designs was a task of considerable difficulty, as justice had to be done to the artistic, sentimental and topographical problems, and their treatment by the competitors. The committee felt that anything mainly monumental would be undesirable, first because of the modest character of Isidor and lda Straus; second, it would have reduced the available park space to too small an area, and third, the immediate background of an apartment house did not lend itself as a proper frame for anything rising high from the ground.

"The committee in reaching its determination eliminated the idea of attempting to memorialize some of the splendid qualities of lsidor and Ida Straus, but accepted the suggestion which has endeavored to embody in this little park, surrounded by the restless hum of traffic, a scheme of peaceful contemplation over a sheet of water, leaving it to the meditative public to muse over the sacrifice that the same element demanded in the Titanic disaster."


Mark Baber, USA


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Encyclopedia Titanica (2005) STRAUS FOUNTAIN AWARD TO LUKEMAN (New York Times, Friday 21st March 1913, ref: #4663, published 11 August 2005, generated 22nd May 2024 01:19:11 PM); URL : https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/straus-fountain-award-lukeman.html