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Mother Earth


Stainless Steel

15’H x 9’W x 2’D

Created for the following cities: Washington, DC, Buenos Aires, Argentina, Yaoundé, Cameroon,
Bonn, Germany, Jerusalem Israel, Jaipur, India, Guilin, China, and Hamilton, New Zealand.

Mother Earth Project
Inspiring Sustainability Around The Globe

As art can transcend and inspire the human spirit, Rubenstein has created an edition of this sculpture as the Symbol of Sustainability and the footprint of this project. The Mother Earth sculpture has been placed in cities worldwide, including, Washington, DC, Yaoundé, Cameroon, Jerusalem, Israel, Bonn, Germany, Jaipur, India and Guilin, China.

Mother Earth was designed by scientist and public artist Barton Rubenstein, who with his family began the Mother Earth Project in 2015. The idea that inspired the design of Mother Earth is that man is created from and out of the earth, and that there is an inherent symbiotic relationship between the two. This three-dimensional sculpture presents an ethereal pose of a human profile, projecting a vision of universality, with a stainless steel material indicating neither race nor nationality. More details can be found at:

Story Behind the Design: Rubenstein was initially asked by the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery Director Kim Sajet to create a large scale sculpture for the front of its museum, to celebrate a great American woman, because at the time “the museum had too many white old men!” In an eureka moment, Rubenstein decided to celebrate the mothers and grandmothers of the United States, the unsung heroes that created our great country. He chose his belated mother as his subject, who coincidentally had been a curator and art historian at the Smithsonian Institution. He created the sculpture but in the eleventh hour, Sajet had a change of vision and decided to begin the NPG Gala Events, to raise money for ongoing programs. She asked Rubenstein to create a smaller version of the design, to be called the Portrait of a Nation Prize. Every two years, Rubenstein creates approximately five sculptures for this event. The Smithsonian gave all rights to Rubenstein to use the large scale sculpture. Rubenstein’s then 12-year-old son, Ari, said, “Dad, why don’t you place this sculpture in all continents of the world!” Thus began the Mother Earth Project.

Mother Earth
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