Erecting a statue of someone to honor their memory and ensure their immortality seems a little dated in the digital age. But history buffs and travel-junkies still go thousands of miles to see monuments to their favorite authors, artists, and historical figures, so there must be something elementally compelling about it. Maybe it’s just us, but we think there’s something satisfying about a life-size (or larger than life) statue of a beloved figure, able to be touched and taking up space in the world. To that end, we’ve collected a series of statues of some of our favorite authors, from the surreal (Kafka) to the cheeky (Hemingway) to the monumentally brooding (Tolstoy). Of course, if you’re famous enough to have one statue erected in your honor, you’re probably famous enough to have more than one, so of course some of these sculptures are only one in a series of renditions (we’re looking at you, Shakespeare), but they happen to be our favorites. Click through to catch a glimpse of some famous authors in the bronze, and let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorite literary sculptures in the comments!
Franz Kafka, astride a headless man, Prague. Sculpture by the Czech sculptor, Jaroslav Róna, 2004.