Minerva - Cantor Arts Center - Palo Alto, CA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NW_history_buff
N 37° 25.982 W 122° 10.241
10S E 573369 N 4143234
Quick Description: A Minerva statue is located within the Cantor Arts Center on the Stanford University campus.
Location: California, United States
Date Posted: 3/9/2015 5:56:00 PM
Waymark Code: WMNG3W
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member saopaulo1
Views: 3

Long Description:
Located in the main lobby of the Cantor Arts Center on the Stanford University campus is a statue of the Roman goddess Minerva. There are two placards near the statue that highlight Minerva and the artist who created here. The first placard reads:

Minerva, the Roman counterpart of the Greek goddess Athena, is the goddess of wisdom, the arts, and justice. Shea wears a helmet and bears a spear in her role as patroness of justified wars. The snake beside her may allude to Erichthonius, the mythical first king of the city of Athens whom the goddess had reared. As depicted on a Greek vase in the Staatliche Museum, Berlin, he is characterized as a serpentine being. Around Minerva's neck is the aegis, a protective collar describes by the Roman author Virgil as "a fearsome thing with a surface of gold-like scaly snake-skin." Forged by the god Hephestus, Athena later affixed the head of Medusa to it.

The second placard highlights the sculptor of this statue and reads:

Antonio Frilli
Italy, 1835-1892

Minerva Giustiniani, c. 1890
Marble with brass spear
Stanford Family Collections, 1999.76

Antonio Frilli was a very proficient Florentine sculptor. Although he also sold original compositions, the company he established in 1860 gained an international reputation for making replicas of famous statues, and the Stanfords purchased several to ornament their new art museum. Frilli's Hope and Menander flank the main entrance but of those once featured on the main stairway, only Minerva Giustiniani survived the 1906 earthquake.

Frilli's statue is a replica of a 2nd-century Roman version of a Greek bronze of the 4th century B.C. First documented in the Giustiniani collections in 1631, the statue was reputedly excavated from a site near an ancient Roman temple of Minerva. Thought to be a rare cult figure and not just a work of art, it gained particular renown. In addition, its austere beauty supported the theory that it derived from the statue of Athena made by Phidias for the Parthenon. In 1805 the Giustiniani family sold Minerva to Lucien Bonaparte who in turn sold it to Pope Pius VII in 1817 for the Vatican collection, where it remains today.

Time Period: Ancient

Approximate Date of Epic Period: 2nd century B.C.

Epic Type: Mythical

Exhibit Type: Figure, Statue, 3D Art

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