Monument to Joe Louis

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Fist of Joe Louis)
Jump to: navigation, search
Joe Louis Mon. Detroit 6 75dpi.jpg

The Monument to Joe Louis, known also as "The Fist",[1] is a memorial to the boxer at Detroit's Hart Plaza.

Dedicated on October 16, 1986, the sculpture, commissioned by Sports Illustrated magazine[2] from the Mexican-American sculptor Robert Graham, is a 24-foot-long (7.3 m) arm with a fisted hand suspended by a 24-foot-high (7.3 m) pyramidal framework.

It represents the power of his punch both inside and outside the ring. Because of his efforts to fight Jim Crow laws, the fist was symbolically aimed toward racial injustice.[3] Graham referred to the sculpture as a "battering ram".[4]

The sculpture was vandalized by two Caucasian-American males in 2004, who covered it in white paint and left a sign which read, "Courtesy of Fighting Whities".[4] Graham responded that the piece was "working" if it aroused passion.[4]

Showing title of piece

In 2013, art dealer and art historian Eric Ian Hornak Spoutz was quoted in the Detroit News stating that the value of the sculpture is between $1,000,000 and $2,000,000.[5]


  1. ^ Colby, Joy Hakanson (10 July 2006). "Art 'hospitals' heal history: Conservators battle against time and abuse to fix and preserve precious artwork". Detroit News. p. E.1. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Fist of a Champion - Detroit's Monument to Joe Louis". Retrieved 05-04-2009.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  4. ^ a b c Zaslow, Jeffrey (4 Mar 2004). "In Detroit, a Blow To 'The Fist' Touches A Sensitive Nerve; Controversial Sculpture Is Defaced With Paint; Vandals Deny Racism". Wall Street Journal. p. A.1. 
  5. ^ Hodges, Michael. (October 24, 2013).Could cash-strapped Detroit's other assets be sold?. The Detroit News. Retrieved on October 25, 2013.

Coordinates: 42°19′43″N 83°02′40″W / 42.328694°N 83.044544°W / 42.328694; -83.044544