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Georg John Lober (November 7, 1891 – December 14, 1961) was an American sculptor and executive secretary for the New York City Municipal Art Commission from 1943 to 1960. His best known works include a 1959 statue of George M. Cohan situated in Times Square, a 1949 sculpture of Thomas Paine in Morristown, New Jersey, and a bronze sculpture of Hans Christian Andersen located in Central Park, Manhattan.

Georg John Lober
Georg J Lober self image crop.jpg
circa 1911
BornNovember 7, 1891
DiedDecember 14, 1961 (aged 70)
NationalityAmerican
Known forsculptor

Contents

BackgroundEdit

Born in Chicago, Illinois in 1892, Lober moved to Keyport, New Jersey as a teenager.[1] Lober studied sculpture at the Beaux-Arts Institute of Design and at the National Academy of Design, and was an apprentice of Mount Rushmore sculptor Gutzon Borglum.[2]

CareerEdit

His bas reliefs of Robert Fulton and Henry Hudson in 1909 were his first major works. A bronze statue of Eve that he created for the 1939 New York World's Fair in Flushing, Queens was destroyed by vandals. A 1949 sculpture of Thomas Paine is located in Morristown, New Jersey's Burnham Park.[1]

 
Statue of Hans Christian Andersen, by Georg John Lober, Central Park in New York City

He was appointed to the New York City Municipal Art Commission in 1942, which was responsible for supervising the artistic quality of all city matters and served as its executive secretary from 1943 to 1960. He was tasked in 1946 by Mayor of New York City William O'Dwyer to restore portraits in New York City Hall that had deteriorated severely. A June 1950 editorial in The New York Times thanked Lober and the Art Commission, saying that they "deserve a pat on the back for their careful and painstaking work" in preserving the city's heritage for future generations.[2]

Lober created an 8 feet (2.4 m) seated figure of Hans Christian Andersen on a granite bench for New York City's Central Park, that was cast in bronze at Long Island City's Modern Art Foundry. The statue was designed to accompany an outdoor center for story-telling, and was placed on a 40-foot square stone platform surrounded by benches, trees and shrubs.[3] The $75,000 cost of the monument was covered in part by contributions from Danish and American schoolchildren.[4] Lober returned to the theme with his 1955 medal commemorating the 150th anniversary of Anderson's birth, created for the Society of Medalists.

Composer Oscar Hammerstein II was the chairman of a committee that selected Lober and architect Otto F. Langmann to develop a statue of composer, playwright, and actor George M. Cohan that sits in Duffy Square on Broadway at the northern end of Times Square in Midtown Manhattan. The statue was formally unveiled and dedicated on September 11, 1959 by Mayor Robert F. Wagner.[5]

DenmarkEdit

In 1912, Lober created an emblem for the Rebild National Park (Danish: Rebild Bakker] in Rebild, Region Nordjylland, Denmark. He also made a bronze relief of Abraham Lincoln that is located in Rebild National Park. A bronze portrait of native son Hans Christian Andersen is in the Odense Museum. Denmark recognized Lober in 1950 with an appointment as a Knight of the Order of the Dannebrog.[1]

Personal lifeEdit

Lober lived at 33 West 67th Street in Manhattan. He died on December 14, 1961, and was interred in St. Joseph's Cemetery in Keyport.[1][2]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d Jeandron, Jack. "Keyport", Arcadia Publishing, 2003, ISBN 0-7385-2439-5, via Google Books, p. 138. Accessed October 7, 2008.
  2. ^ a b c Staff. "GEORG J. LOBER, 69, SCULPTOR, IS DEAD; Ex-Head of Art Commission Here--Did Cohan Statue", The New York Times, December 15, 1961. Accessed October 7, 2008.
  3. ^ Staff. "ANDERSEN MEMORIAL TO BE PLACED IN PARK", The New York Times, July 15, 1956. Accessed October 7, 2008.
  4. ^ Hans Christian Andersen, Central Park Conservancy. Accessed October 7, 2008.
  5. ^ George M. Cohan Statue in Duffy Square, New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. Accessed October 7, 2008.

External linksEdit