The photo below shows Hannibal Pianta in his shop modeling a large cartouche, and the surrounding elements.
 
Hannibal in his shop-1926
 
Click on the image above to go to the newspaper story from Nov 1926 that appeared along with that photo. Click on the image below to go to a view of the building from across the street. These photos were taken in August 2000, and show this piece of work after casting and placement on the building at the corner of Houston and Bowie streets in downtown San Antonio, Texas.
 
click here to see a view of this building from across the street
 
Hannibal was born in Boccioletto, Italy in 1875. He immigrated to the United States around 1905, and set up shop at 509 Leal St., in San Antonio, Texas, with his father John, who already had an established business producing, primarily, ornamental capitals. John was the chief plasterer during the construction of the Texas State Capitol Building, as well as the Georgia State Capitol.
Later, they moved the shop to 300 Fredericksburg Rd , San Antonio, Texas at the corner of Cornell St. Hannibal's son, Eugene, told me that all the ornamentation for the Majestic Theatre was modeled and cast at this location, then trucked downtown. That building is still standing, and there are some fine examples of his cast stone in place there, as illustrated in the photo below, taken in August, 2000. You can click on the photo for a closer view of this work. Hannibal's work can be seen all over San Antonio, as well as throughout the state of Texas. All of the ornamentation for The Empire Theatre was done by Hannibal in 1913-14. His last major piece of work was a twice life size replica of the Rose Window (at Mission San Jose). It was done for St. Anne's Catholic church in, Beaumont, Texas. There is scan of a copy of this final piece of artwork from the San Antonio Express newspaper, February 26, 1937, before it shipped. Hannibal's son Dale is standing with it. It is huge, and, of course, executed flawlessly. The final work can be viewed by clicking on page 5, farther down on this page.
 
Hannibal's shop-8/15/2000, click on this image to see a close up view
 
In 1936 Hannibal worked on the Goliad Memorial Auditorium project along with HugoVilla, sculptor, and the architects Samuel Charles Phelps Vosper, and Raiford Stripling. The auditorium was built as part of the Texas Centennial celebration. Click on page six, below to go to that page.
Hannibal was delivering a load of cast stone in his truck, to Laredo, in 1937, when he was struck by a train while crossing the tracks at So. Zarzamora St. Click on the image below to open a new page with a photo of the story that appeared in the San Antonio Light newspaper on Sunday, November 14,1937.
obituary
 
His building is still there at 300 Fredericksburg Rd, but it has not been restored yet. Currently it is occupied by Aero Accessories, Inc. They have been there since 1956. AA, Inc. specializes in overhauling, repairing and testing radial engine accessories, primarily for aircraft from the WWII era. Inside the building is a top quality, precision facility.
 
 
inside the studios
inside the studios
 
the work
the work
 
outside the studios
outside the studios
 
the final work
the final work
 
Goliad
Goliad
 
unidentified
unidentified
 
copyright 1999 - 2004.
stuccoist
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