Father Junipero Serra Sculpture – Ventura CA


This statue of the Franciscan missionary, Father Junipero Serra was commissioned by the WPA in 1935. John Palo Kangas made the statue out of concrete. The original concrete deteriorated over time. In 1989, the original was placed in storage and replaced with an exact replica in bronze.

The Art Inventories Catalog gives the following description:
“Full-length portrait of Father Junipero Serra. He wears a cleric’s robe with cowl and rope belt around the waist. A rosary hangs from his belt at his proper left side. He holds a book in his proper left hand. In his proper right hand he holds a walking stick close to his torso. He wears sandals on his feet. His head is turned to the proper left. The bronze sculpture is patinaed and stands on a concrete base faced with polished black Andean granite.”

A nearby plaque reads:
“Fra. Junipero Serra by John Palo-Kangas. November 27, 1936. San Buenaventura Historical Preservation Commission, landmark No. 3”.

Source notes

Project submitted by Douglas Dodd.


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Location Info

Poli St. and California St.
Ventura, CA 93002

Location notes:
The statue is located in front of the Ventura City Hall.

Coordinates: 34.282130, -119.292689

One comment on “Father Junipero Serra Sculpture – Ventura CA

  1. Holly Fenelon

    In July 2020, the Ventura City Council voted to remove the statue of Father Serra from the front of the old Courthouse. This was done in response to complaints that Father Serra and his fellow priests cruelly subjugated the indigenous people of California as they established their missions along El Camino Real. As of now, the statue has been surrounded with chain link fencing to protect it from being defaced or pulled down.

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