Monumental Discobolus


This statue was commissioned by Adolph Sutro (1830 — 1898) philanthropist and Mayor of San Francisco (1895-1897) for Sutro Heights, a large public park overseeing the San Francisco Bay. Sutro commissioned several well-regarded, contemporary Italian sculptors to create large-scale statues inspired by classical Greco-Roman works for show in the gardens, a popular destination for locals. Showing little to no wear, this Discobolus is one of the few surviving statues from Sutro's gardens.

The original Discobolus is attributed to the ancient sculptor Myron (Athenian, 5th Century B.C.). The sculpture was widely copied in antiquity. This version closely resembles the Discobolus Palombara, a 1st-century Roman copy of Myron's original that was discovered at the Villa Palombara (Rome) in 1781. The art historian characterized the throw taking place "by sheer intelligence," symbolizing the combination of physical mastery and mental strength.

c. 1898

74 x 40 x 29 in.