Triton

| Modern * London |

After obsessively reading Stephen Fry’s Mythos I now see Greek Mythology everywhere I go (not a complaint). Found this beautiful statue opposite Jubilee Gates in Regents Park and, following a fun – but unsuccessful - game of ‘Guess the God’, I decided to actually do some research on the figure.


The sculpture itself was donated by Constance Goetze in memory of her artist husband, Sigismund. It was designed by William McMillan and erected in 1950 when it also won the annual gold medal award for the best statue unveiled in London that year.


It depicts the Greek God Triton and two nereids who are working together to calm the waters by blowing on the magic conch shell. Triton is the son of Poseidon and Amphitrite, and best known for his role as Ariel’s father in The Little Mermaid. Triton is a half human-half fish (merman) who lives in a golden palace at the bottom of the sea and whose main job seems to be relaxing the waves and riding sea monsters.


The Greeks were poetic in their use of deities to explain the natural environment, and Gods who could control nature were crucial in narrating the origins and happenings of the world. The waves could change in an instant simply because Triton blew his conch shell. Global warming would be a lot easier to fix if that were true...

 

Regents Park, London, NW1 4NR