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Fishman Fountain (Ger. Fischmännchen-Brunnen)


Fishman Fountain (Ger. Fischmännchen-Brunnen)


In the hall of the Citizen Service Center (Ger. Service Center) of Guben City Hall there is a bronze figure of a child holding two squirting fish.

A specially created for this sculpture niche is located in its original, pre-war place, the Guben Historical Museum (now Gubin, 3 Maja str.).

Historical background

In 1908, the artist Rudolf Henn created a sculpture that was dynamic, yet playful in its form. It was initially under the name "Brunnenbuberl". The object was commissioned by Adolf Wolf, a fabric manufacturer from Guben, who placed it in the newly built Guben Historical Museum, which was funded by him. The sculpture was later incorporated into the fountain placed in a niche located right next to the entrance to the building. Unfortunately, during the World War II, the Fishman Fountain was lost, like other valuable sculptures from Guben's urban space, being either melted down, destroyed or stolen.

When one of the four casts of the figure arrived at an auction house in New York in 2010, a pair of entrepreneurs from Guben seized the opportunity to acquire this historically important artwork for Guben. The fountain and the sculpture returned to Germany by sea, first stopping at Berlin's famous Noack bronze foundry, where it was painstakingly restored. In 2013, exactly 100 years after the Fishman was set up on the fountain at the former Historical Museum, the sculpture was re-incorporated into the cultural fabric of the city, this time becoming part of the Guben city administration hall.

Information about the artists

Rudolph Henn

  • Born in Olsbrücken, Palatinate (Germany) in 1880 - died in 1955 in New York (USA)
  • From 1901: studies of figural sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich
  • 1907: expedition to the East Indies
  • From 1908: freelance sculptor in Munich
  • 1910: statue of Luise Hensel in Paderborn
  • 1912: war memorial in Eupen
  • 1912-1913: sculpture at Munich Central Customs
  • 1915-1918: military service, then moved to Kaiserslautern
  • 1929: emigration to the United States
  • 1935: Girl Reading, 189 Public School, New York
  • 1936-1937: participation in the Project of Treasury Art
  • 1938: Postman, Port Office in Loudonville, Ohio.

Artwork review

Due to the insufficient number of sources, it is not possible to conduct a more detailed artistic review.


Gas Str. 4, 03172 Guben, Germany

Resident Service Center (Ger. Service Center) (Guben City Hall)

Year of creation/if applies changes

Creation: 1908

Installation at the city museum: 1913

Renovation and relocation to its current location: 2013

Investor/architect/creator etc.
Original sculpture: Rudolph Henn, Copy cast and restauration: Bronzegießerei Noack
Object's condition
Very good
Technical information

Height: about 1,70 m

Diameter / width of the well: about 1 m

Material: bronze