Public Art: Quadriga dell'Unita
Also Known As : Quadriga Unit
Sculptors: © Carlo Fontana (5th October, 1865 - 16th
October 1956 ) and Paolo Bartolini (1859 - 1930)
Description: There are two Quadrigas atop the
Vittorio Monument representing Unity (Patriae Unitati) and Liberty (Civium Libertati). The bronze
group feature a winged Victory standing on her chariot waving to the citizens of Rome. Fontana was
commissioned to create the left Unity Quadriga and Bartolini the right Liberty group.
Date Unveiled: Despite winning the competition to
produce the Quadrigas in 1908 it would take 20 years for them to be installed in 1928.
Location: The two Quadrigas are located atop the
Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II, Piazza Venezia, Rome,
Quadriga dell'Unita Trivia: Fontana chose Rosalie
Brown as the model for Unity, while Bartolini chose to stick to tradition by using the face of the noblewoman
Vittoria Colonna, Duchess of Sermoneta for Liberty.
What is a Quadriga? :
A quadriga is a chariot drawn by four horses which were often raced during the
Ancient Olympic Games. Quadrigas became symbols of Victory and Triumph and are often depicted with either Victory
(Victoria) or Fame (Pheme or Fama) behind the reigns of the chariot. Victory being the Roman Goddess and Fame being
the Greek equivilent. In mythology the quadriga is the chariot of the gods. Apollo is often depicted driving his
quadriga across the heavens.
All modern quadrigas are based on the Triumphal Quadriga or Horses of St Mark's
in Venice.This being the only surviving quadriga from ancient times. The Venetian crusaders stole them in 1204
during the crusades from the Hippodrome of Constantinople. Nearly 500 years later Napoleon stole the horses from
the Venetians and carted them off to Paris. They were later returned in 1815.
So Where are All The Quadrigas Around The World?
Brussels, Belgium - Quadriga of Brabant atop Parc du Cinquantenaire, by sculptors
Thomas Vincotte and Jules Lagae.
London, England - Wellington Arch Quadriga atop the Wellington Arch, by sculptor
Paris, France - Carrousel quadriga atop the Arc de Triomphe, by sculptor Baron
François Joseph Bosio.
Paris , France - Two quadrigas atop the Grand Palais, Georges Recipon
Berlin, Germany - Quadriga of Victory atop
the Brandenburg Gate, by sculptor Johann Gottfried Schadow.
Braunschweig, Germany - Quadriga atop the Royal Palace
Dresden, Germany - Panther Quadriga atop the Semperoper
Munich, German - A lion quadriga atop the Siegestor (Victory Gate), by
sculptor Martin von Wagner
Rome, Italy - Quadriga dell'Unita atop the Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II, by
sculptor Carlo Fontana
Venice, Italy - Horse's of St Mark's /
Triumphal Quadriga, St Mark's Basilica, (Oldest surviving quadriga)
Moscow, Russia - Bolshoi Theatre Quadriga , sculptor Peter Clodt von
Saint Petersburg, Russia - General Staff building Quadriga
Saint Petersburg, Russia - Alexandrinsky Theater Quadriga
Brooklyn, New York, USA - Grand Army Plaza Quadriga atop an arch , by
sculptor Frederick William MacMonnies.
Detroit, Michigan, USA - Victory and Progress quadriga atop the Wayne County
Building, by sculptor J. Massey Rhind
Minnesotta, USA - Progress of the State quadriga atop the Minnesota State Capitol,
by sculptors Daniel Chester French and Edward Clark Potter
References : it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vittoriano