Andersen, Hendrick Christian [Hrsg.]; Hébrard, Ernest M.   [Hrsg.]
Creation of a world centre of communication — Paris, 1913

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CREATION OF A WORLD-CENTRE.

the natural outflow of water any artistic interpretation. Yet, although the
story may be legendary, a rare beauty surrounds the well beside which Jesus
of Nazareth stopped to rest and drink, and there first used the fountain as a
symbol to suggest something more than the spring that merely wells up from
the ground. " Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again ", he
said, " but whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never
thirst. But the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of
water springing up into everlasting life. " No sculptured image remains
more clearly in the imagination than these simple words, by which the foun-
tain has been glorified and consecrated to all humanity.

Later, and especially in the Middle Ages, we find fountains decorating
cities and towns, many without any special attraction, but some of imposing
importance and high artistic merit placed monumentally in squares and richly
decorated with symbolic and allegorical figures. But although these form
an artistic sculptured setting, they seldom appeal to the imagination as sym-
bolising anything human or intellectual. Yet what worthier subject could a
sculptor find for the exercise of his art than the glorification of the spirit of
the everlasting flow of pure water? Indeed, should not this in itself inspire
him to glorify the everlasting current of the spirit of humanity, in its varied
phases, on its brief but divine mission from Dawn to Day, from Evening to
Night, and back into the arms of its eternal Creator? Life in itself is as a
flowing stream, beautiful and symbolic in its varied manifestations and aspi-
rations, pure and uplifting, strong and above all things divine and everlasting,
as conceived in the beginning. To grasp and to transform the highest ideals
of human beauty into symbolic form, to infuse each form with strength and
rhythm and to arrange these with harmonious display, beside ever-flowing,
pure water, seems in itself one of the most natural and harmonious efforts to
which an artist could devote himself.

The fountain, therefore, now before us was begun in the endeavour to
objectify in lasting material the fairest human forms — not only forms that
convey high ideals of the human body, but those that show its simplest and
most inherent vital forces which inspire love and intellectual conceptions.

It seemed naturally to take the shape of a large circular basin of which
the bottom of blue mosaic symbolises a world, with four symbolic figures
traced upon it in brightly coloured mosaics, representing the seasons. Four
large groups of four figures with children, protected by a central figure,
represent the varying shades of sentiment that bind humanity together and
the triumph of love; the two equestrian statues denoting the lower igrces
controlled by human intelligence. All these, placed in an architectural
setting, are surrounded by ample promenades, seats, and cascades of ever-
flowing sparkling water.

In this composition, the central basin is raised in the midst of three
terraces placed one above the other. The highest and narrowest, encircles
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