Ricardo Beliver, “Fuente del Angel Caído”, Fountain of the Fallen Angel, Bronze, 1877-78, Buen Retiro Park, Madrid, Spain
The statue that crowns the monument in the center of the fountain is the masterpiece of Ricardo Beliver who realized it in plaster in 1877 while a 3rd year pensioner in Rome, inspired by verses from the first Canto of Paradise Lost by John Milton. He submitted it to the 1877 edition of the Exposiciones Nacionales de Bellas Artes where it received the first prize.
The state acquired the work and presented it to the 1878 Expostion Universelle. Since only works in bronze and marble were accepted, the statue was cast in bronze at this occasion and the plaster original destroyed. The statue returned to Spain in what was then the Museo Nacional de Pintura y Escultura, also known as the Museo de la Trinidad, and now part of the Museo de Prado. The director of the museum, Benito Soriano Murillo, proposed its relocation in the open space of Buen Retiro Park so that the public could freely enjoy this peculiar and unusual creation.