Essential Travel Experience #35 – Admire the World's Greatest Sculptures

     As one travels around the world, they become aware of and are able to see some of the world’s best sculptures. Some are found in Art Museums, some are found in religious buildings, and others can be found displayed in public places.

       Of course, every is aware of great sculptors, such as, da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Rodin. But there are a number of obsure individuals who have, nevertheless, left the world with lasting legacies.

     Here is my virtual tour of the great sculptures that I have seen in my travels.

     Starting in the United States, there is Mount Rushmore, sculpted by Gutzon Borglum, one of the most imposing and famous outdoor sculptures in the world.

Mount Rushmore

Remarkably, it was carved out of the Black Hills in South Dakota and portrays four of America’s greatest presidents.

Mount Rushmore

 A similar type of sculpture is found at Stone Mountain, just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. This one portrays the leaders of the Confederacy during the US Civil War, Robert E Lee, Jefferson Davis, and Stonewall Jackson. The finished project was the result of efforts by Augustus Lukeman and, later, Walter Hancock.  

Stone Mountain

It was carved out of a huge monolith.

Stone Mountain

 In Nova Scotia, Canada, Lee and I were treated to another interesting stone carving, although not nearly on the scale of the previous two. It was actually in the lovely town of Peggy’s Cove, along Nova Scotia’s famous “lighthouse route.”

  This sculpture portrays average working people in this small fishing village and was carved by William de Garthe.

de Garthe Monument

  Moving now to Europe, we find the world’s most famous sculptures, those of Michelangelo. In Florence, the “David” is perhaps the most celebrated sculpture in the history of this form of art. It is a magnificent tribute to the human body and to this unlikely hero of the Old Testament.

The David

 The detail in Michelangelo’s work is stunning.

Michelangelo's David

 In Rome, we can find a number of significant works, including Michelangelo’s “Moses”

The Moses

Another incredible Michelangelo sculpture is found in St Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City. It is known as the “Pieta” and portrays a dead Jesus Christ in his mother’s arms.


It is behind glass, hence the reflection.

I particularly like Bernini’s “Four Rivers” which sits in the center of Piazza Navona, in Rome.

Berninis' Four Rivers


   In Bruges, we discovered Michelangelo’s “Madonna with Child” in the Notre Dame Cathedral, one of only a few of the artist’s works outside Italy.

Madonna & Child

  The most famous scultpture in the Louvre, in Paris, France, is the Venus de Milo, the armless tribute to feminine beauty and grace which survives from Greek civilization.

Venus de Milo


This entry was posted in Essential Travel Experiences. Bookmark the permalink.