The Alice in Wonderland Bronze Statue in front of trees Central Park

6 Iconic New York Sculptures Not To Be Missed on Your Weekend Break

Nothing embodies an image of New York City like the Statue of Liberty. A proud symbol of the freedom Americans hold dear. Lady Liberty has been a welcoming image to immigrants coming from far away lands since her dedication in 1886. The Statue of Liberty is just one of the city’s celebrated New York sculptures visitors can enjoy.

While strolling from one NYC attraction to the next, you’ll most likely pass some of the city’s commissioned artwork along the way. Each art piece holds an interesting backstory. Impress your travel companions by reciting a few fun facts as they gaze at these NYC works of art.

Charging Bull Statue Wall Street New York
Wall Street Charging Bull during the period of economic recovery in the United States on June 24, 2011, in New York. The Bull is a symbol of American prosperity and perseverance.

Charging Bull

Location: Wall Street

Arturo Di Modica created the bronze bull in an aggressive, ready-to-charge position. It was created to symbolize the strength and determination of the American people during the 1987 stock market crash. Surprisingly, this piece was not commissioned by the city. The artist took it upon himself to install the 3,200 kg sculpture in Lower Manhattan. Before authorities seized and impounded the iconic bull, it made quite an impression on those passing by. Many stood in amazement at the work of art, posed for pictures and fell in love with the piece. After a public outcry, the bull was reinstalled in 1989 and remains in the city today, even though it’s still on a temporary permit.

The Charging Bull has recently been accompanied by another bronze statue depicting a young girl standing strong as she faces the bull. The sculpture is known as “Fearless Girl” and it was installed just before International Women’s Day in 2017. Though it’s become a symbol of the empowerment of women it was actually commissioned by a financial firm to promote an index fund. Her plaque reads, “Know the power of women in leadership, SHE makes a difference.” “SHE” is a reference to the stock’s NASDAQ symbol.

The famous Love sign on 6th avenue in midtown New York
NEW YORK,USA – AUGUST 20,2016: The famous Love sign on 6th avenue in midtown New York City

LOVE Sculpture

Location: Avenue of the Americas and 57th

This piece is pop art at it’s finest. Its red lacquer finish stands out among the drab grey concrete of Manhattan’s sidewalks. If you’ve mailed a letter from the US you may recognize it as the same image depicted on some US postage stamps. The art piece makes for a colourful and fun photo op for visitors on a New York weekend break. If you happen to be on 53rd and 7th keep an eye out for the ‘Hope” sculpture, a piece by the same artist.


Location: Rockefeller Center

Those familiar with the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree will recognize Prometheus as the gilded statue at the base of the iconic tree. The statue is 5.5 metes in height and depicts the Greek legend, Prometheus carrying fire to mankind after stealing it from Chariot of the Sun. The figure has become synonymous with Rockefeller Center.

Bethesda Fountain in Central Park in New York
Bethesda Fountain in Central Park in New York City

Bethesda Fountain

Location: Central Park, Mid Park at 72nd Street

No New York weekend break is complete without a walk through Central Park. Located in the center of the Terrace, visitors will find Emma Stebbins’ statue of a female winged angel. Stebbins was the first woman to receive a public commission for a major piece of artwork in New York City. The statue is also referred to as “Angel of the Water” as the statue shows the angelic creature touching down upon the fountain. Beneath her are four cherubs depicting, temperance, purity, health, and piece. A beautiful reminder of beauty and tranquility amidst the hustle and bustle of this major metropolitan city.

The Alice in Wonderland sculpture, Central park New York.
The Alice in Wonderland sculpture, Central Park New York. Is a favourite feature among children, who love to climb atop it and explore.

Alice in Wonderland

Location: Central Park

In 1957, philanthropist George Delacorte commissioned this whimsical piece of artwork as a gift to children visiting New York City. The piece is also a tribute to his wife who often read Anderson’s famous story to their children. The statue depicts Alice sitting atop a mushroom while Mad Hatter hosts a tea party. To the left is White Rabbit holding his pocket watch. Children find the statue an enjoyable spot to climb and be playful while visiting the park. Much like Delacorte had envisioned.

Balto Statue

Location: Central Park

Dog lovers will want to pay homage to the statue depicting a Siberian Husky and sled dog hero named, Balto. In 1925 a Diphtheria outbreak hit the rural area of Nome, Alaska. Diphtheria antitoxin was needed to get to Nome to combat this deadly disease. The serum was transported part of the way by train but for the most treacherous leg of the journey, Balto led the dog sled team in whiteout condition to get the serum the people of Nome. Balto and the other sled dogs on the mission, are credited with saving the lives of many. After his death in 1933, his body was taxidermied and is kept at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

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