W is for Fontaine Wallace

W is for Fontaine Wallace

Both Marika Maijala and Maria Herreros have been influenced by the dreamy architecture of Paris. In the exhibition, the bridges, parks and fountains set the verdurous, soothing tone in the first room of the gallery. The intimate interiors and nightlife in 1920s Paris are placed in the second room instead. The image used in the exhibition invite is Maria Herreros’ Fuentes Wallace, an illustration from the book Paris Sera Toujours Paris (Lunwerg Editores 2018). As most of her works, it is a mixed media artwork done with watercolor and graphite on 300 gr cotton paper. The eye-catching little painting has a romantic aesthetic and it reflects the theme of the exhibition. Yet there is mystery in it, not to be explained but admired. The gracefully bashful caryatids surrounded by the whispering branches, just before nightfall.

Recognized worldwide as one of the symbols of Paris, Wallace Fountains are public drinking fountains sculpted by Charles-Auguste Lebourg. They are large cast-iron sculptures scattered throughout the city of Paris, France, mainly along the most-frequented sidewalks. The fountains bear the name of a generous British art collector and philanthropist Sir Richard Wallace, who financed the creation of 50 drinking fountains to be set up across the City of Paris. The idea was to provide all Parisians with free access to clean water. The fountains had to be practical as well as beautiful. The fountains is still drinkable today and they are used as a free source of water for the homeless and the needy.


Maria Herreros: Fuentes Wallace, illustration from the book Paris Sera Toujours Paris, 2018. Watercolor and graphite on paper.

Cover image:
Marika Maijala: Fountain, 2019. Still image for an animation.

Further reading:

The iconic Wallace Fountains in Paris – French Moments

Wallace Fountains, France – Memorial Drinking Fountains