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Carl Milles and the statuette


Carl Milles was arguably Sweden’s most prominent sculptor in the 20th century. “The Hand of God” was one of Milles’ last works before his death. Originally, Milles created it to honor the Swedish innovator and entrepreneur C. E. Johansson who revolutionized precision measuring of auto and other industrial parts which made the assembly line possible, and the original still stands in Johansson’s hometown of Eskilstuna.

Throughout the 1930s Milles worked at Cranbrook Academy of Art near Detroit. Thanks to a contribution from the United Auto Workers “The Hand of God” was recast and donated to the city of Detroit in honor of Frank Murphy, Michigan Governor and US Supreme Court Associate Justice. It now stands outside the Frank Murphy Hall of Justice in Detroit.

For more information about Carl Milles, visit Millesgården.