Lexington, Kentucky: Fountain of Unclad Youth

1933 sculpture, "A fountain dedicated to youth," features a surprisingly clothing-deficient boy and girl.

Gratz Park

250 W. 3rd St., Lexington, KY
Gratz Park. North side of the city, on the south side of W. 3rd St. between N. Mill and Market Sts.
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Sculpture in fountain.

Fountain of Unclad Youth

Nice statue. Still in great shape. Definitely different. Nice park and area. Parking can be difficult.

[bordeauxbarb, 02/29/2020]

Youth fountain.

Children in the Fountain of Youth

Gratz Park, located just south of Transylvania University, has a fountain that was dedicated to the youth of Lexington by famed Kentucky novelist James Lane Allen (1849-1925). Allen was an author known for using local Kentucky dialects in his novels, and when he died in 1925 he left a large part of his estate to the city of Lexington. The city used some of the money to upgrade Gratz Park and had a fountain installed in Allen's honor.

A plaque in front of it states that it is "A fountain dedicated to youth." What's odd about this is that the boy and girl depicted with the fountain are nearly nude. The boy, who is showing the girl a sailboat, appears to be wearing a skimpy loin cloth, but the girl, who looks rather surprised, is nude from the waist up. It kind of makes you wonder what city leaders were thinking when the statues were approved. Maybe they were going for a classic Greek and Roman look, but it is a rather strange sculpture.

[signmanjoe, 03/21/2018]

The 1933 sculpture was assaulted by vandals in 1969 and again in 1983 -- presumably for its nudity -- but the city has repaired it every time.

Nearby Offbeat Places

Transylvania's Moosnick MuseumTransylvania's Moosnick Museum, Lexington, KY - < 1 mi.
Kissing StreetlightsKissing Streetlights, Lexington, KY - < 1 mi.
Zero Milestone CamelZero Milestone Camel, Lexington, KY - < 1 mi.
In the region:
Banjo Toting Old Joe Clark, Mt. Vernon, KY - 47 mi.

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