Daniel Chester French

"The George Robert White Memorial"
('Casting Bread Upon The Waters')

Daniel Chester French was commissioned to sculpt two memorials to the noted Boston philanthropist George Robert White (1847-1922). Information about White is found on the page with images about French's other monument in memory of White, the George Robert White Memorial ("The Angel of Peace") which stands in Forest Hills Cemetery (near Boston), Massachusetts.

French's second monument to White stands in Boston's Public Garden (completed and dedicated in 1924), at the northwest corner near the intersection of Beacon and Arlington Streets. It was erected in honor of White and his stunning philanthropy on behalf of the city of Boston which included a legacy of over $5 million; he left $50,000 for the creation of this monument in his memory.

French's momument to White in Forest Hills cemetery, The Angel of Peace, is a huge, serene portrayal of an angel. By contrast, the monument French created in memory of White in the Public Garden is active, and titled "Casting Bread Upon the Waters" (French originally thought to title the statue, "The Spirit of Giving" but changed his mind). French shows a smiling, moving angel holding a basket in her left hand and scattering seed with her right, as if to show how White gave his money to many causes which then took root and bore fruit.

The base of the statue gives the verse from Ecclesiastes from which the statue takes its name:

Cast your bread on the waters;
for you shall find it after many days.
(Ecclesiastes 11:1)

All photos below were taken by Douglas Yeo in May 2003 except for the final photo on this page, taken by Maya Balle in September 2009.

A frontal view of the White Memorial, "Casting Bread Upon the Waters" showing the monument, its pedestal, and the fountain at its base.

A closer view of "Casting Bread Upon the Waters."

Here is a closer view of the basket and arms of the angel which is "Casting Bread Upon the Waters."

This is a view of the left side of "Casting Bread Upon the Waters" showing French's spectacular angel wings - massive and powerful yet light and active.

This view of "Casting Bread Upon the Waters" is from the rear of the statue, again showing detail of the magnificent angel wings.

Here is a detail of the inscription on the base of "Casting Bread Upon the Waters", taking from the Bible's book of Ecclesiastes, chapter 11, verse 1.

"Casting Bread Upon the Waters" stands in a fountain (which in this photo had not yet been turned on for the season). Outside the fountain is an inscription explaining White's contribution to the City of Boston: "A public spirited citizen whose great gift to the City of Boston provided for the creation of works of public utility and beauty for the use and enjoyment of the inhabitants."

On either side of the fountain is a massive cornucopia symbolizing "plenty" which ends with a ram's head. This view is of the cornucopia fountain on the left side of "Casting Bread Upon the Waters."

This beautiful photo of the "Casting Bread Upon the Waters" taken by Maya Balle (used with permission) shows fresh fruit placed in the basket and at the foot of the sculpture. It is not uncommon to find fruit so placed by a variety of people including a homeless man who from time to time sleeps at the foot of the memorial. Such gives added meaning to the phrase, "Sculpture of Daniel Chester French in Situ."

Return to the Daniel Chester French: Sculptures In Situ page.

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