Joe Louis’ fist sculpture in Detroit getting overhaul

A statue of Joe Louis's fist was unveiled in 1987.

Tom Pidgeon/Getty Images/NHLI

DETROIT — Detroit’s iconic sculpture of the arm and fist of famed boxer Joe Louis is getting an overhaul.

The Detroit Institute of Arts conservation staff will lead a project on Wednesday to replace hanging cables, perform minor structural work and clean the surface of the "Monument to Joe Louis."

The 24-foot bronze sculpture displayed near downtown’s Hart Plaza is part of the DIA’s collection and the museum says it needs conservation treatment about every 10 years. Precision Installation and Services and Venus Bronze Works will be assisting museum staff.

Work will take place weather permitting.

The monument to the late heavyweight champion was commissioned with a $350,000 grant from Sports Illustrated magazine. It was unveiled in 1987.