|Died||October 30, 1936 76) (aged|
Lorado Zadok Taft (April 29, 1860 – October 30, 1936) was an American sculptor, writer and educator. Taft was born in Elmwood, Illinois, in 1860 and died in his home studio in Chicago in 1936.Taft was the father of US Representative Emily Taft Douglas, father-in-law to her husband, US Senator Paul Douglas, and a distant relative of US President William Howard Taft.
Taft was born in Elmwood, Illinois. His father was a professor of geology at the Illinois Industrial University (later renamed the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign). He lived much of his childhood at 601 E. John Street, Champaign, Illinois, near the center of the UIUC campus. The house, now known as the Taft House was built by his father in 1873. It was purchased by the university in 1949 and moved about one mile southeast.After being homeschooled by his parents, Taft earned his bachelor's degree (1879) and master's degree (1880) at Illinois Industrial University.
After his master's degree, he left for Paris to study sculpture, attending the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts from 1880 to 1883, where he studied with Augustin Dumont, Jean-Marie Bonnassieux and Jules Thomas. His record there was outstanding; he was cited as "top man" in his studio and twice exhibited at the Salon.
Upon returning to the United States in 1886, Taft settled in Chicago. He taught at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago until 1929. In addition to work in clay and plaster, Taft taught his students marble carving, and had them work on group projects. He also lectured at the University of Chicago and the University of Illinois.
In 1892, while the art community of Chicago was preparing for the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893, chief architect Daniel Burnham expressed concern to Taft that the sculptural adornments to the buildings might not be finished on time. Taft asked if he could employ some of his female students as assistants (it was not socially accepted for women to work as sculptors at that time) for the Horticultural Building. Burnham responded, "Hire anyone, even white rabbits if they'll do the work." From that arose a group of talented women sculptors known as "the White Rabbits", which included Enid Yandell, Carol Brooks MacNeil, Bessie Potter Vonnoh, Janet Scudder, Julia Bracken, and Ellen Rankin Copp.
Later, another former student, Frances Loring, noted that Taft used his students' talents to further his own career, a not uncommon situation. In general, history has given Taft credit for helping to advance the status of women as sculptors.
As Taft grew older, his eloquence and compelling writing led him, along with Frederick Ruckstull, to the forefront of sculpture's conservative ranks, where he often served as a spokesperson against the modern and abstract trends that developed during his lifetime. Taft's frequent lecture tours for the Chautauqua gave him a broad, popular celebrity status.
In some settings, Taft is better known for his writings than for his sculpture. In 1903, Taft published The History of American Sculpture, the first survey of the subject. The revised 1925 version was to remain the standard reference on the subject until Wayne Craven published Sculpture in America in 1968. In 1921, Taft published Modern Tendencies in Sculpture, a compilation of his lectures given at the Art Institute of Chicago. At the time, it offered a distinct perspective on the development of European sculpture; today, the book continues to be regarded as an excellent survey of American sculpture in the early years of the 20th century.
In 1898, Taft was a founding member of the Eagle's Nest Art Colony in the small town of Oregon, Illinois. Taft designed the Columbus Fountain at Union Station in Washington, D.C., in collaboration with Daniel Burnham. Taft was a member of the National Academy of Design, the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters; he headed the National Sculpture Society in the 1920s, exhibiting at both their 1923 and 1929 shows, and he served on the Board of Art Advisors of Illinois. He served on the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts from 1925 to 1929, and was an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. His papers reside in collections at the Smithsonian Archives of American Art, the University of Illinois, and the Art Institute of Chicago.
He maintained his connections with his alma mater throughout his life. (His association with the University is commemorated by a street named in his honor.) In 1929, he dedicated his sculpture Alma Mater on the University of Illinois campus. Taft envisioned his Alma Mater as a benign and magnificent woman, about 14 ft (4.3 m) high and dressed in classical draperies, rising from a throne and advancing a step forward with outstretched arms in a gesture of generous greeting to her children. Two figures behind her on either side represent the university’s motto, Learning and Labor.
Taft was active until the end of his life. The week before he died, he attended the Quincy, Illinois, dedication ceremonies for his sculpture celebrating the Lincoln-Douglas debates.
He received numerous awards, prizes, and honorary degrees.[ citation needed ] In 1965, his Chicago workplace at 6016 Ingleside Avenue (originally relocating to a brick barn there in 1906) was designated a National Historic Landmark as Lorado Taft Midway Studios.
Taft may be best remembered for his various fountains.[ citation needed ]
The University of Illinois Archives has a series of photographs of most of Lorado Taft's important works, including many of their construction and preliminary models.
Following more than a dozen years of work, Taft's Fountain of Time was unveiled at the west end of Chicago's Midway Plaisance in 1922. Based on poet Austin Dobson's lines — "Time goes, you say? Ah no, Alas, time stays, we go." The fountain shows a cloaked figure of time observing the stream of humanity flowing past.
The last major commission that Taft completed was two groups for the front entrance to the Louisiana State Capitol Building, dedicated in 1932.
He left unfinished a vast work to be called the Fountain of Creation which he planned to place at the opposite end of the Chicago Midway from the "Fountain of Time."Parts of this work were donated to the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign and are now at the library and Foellinger Auditorium. The University named a dormitory and a street in Taft's honor.
During his long career Taft acted as a mentor and teacher for many sculptors including:
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lorado Taft .|
James Earle Fraser was an American sculptor during the first half of the 20th century. His work is integral to many of Washington, D.C.'s most iconic structures.
John Quincy Adams Ward was an American sculptor, whose most familiar work is his larger than life-size standing statue of George Washington on the steps of Federal Hall National Memorial in New York City.
Carl Augustus Heber was an American sculptor noted for his public monuments.
Fountain of Time, or simply Time, is a sculpture by Lorado Taft, measuring 126 feet 10 inches (38.66 m) in length, situated at the western edge of the Midway Plaisance within Washington Park in Chicago, Illinois, in the United States. This location is in the Washington Park community area on Chicago's South Side. Inspired by Henry Austin Dobson's poem "Paradox of Time", and with its 100 figures passing before Father Time, the work was created as a monument to the first 100 years of peace between the United States and the United Kingdom, resulting from the Treaty of Ghent in 1814. Although the fountain's water began running in 1920, the sculpture was not dedicated to the city until 1922. The sculpture is a contributing structure to the Washington Park United States Registered Historic District, which is a National Register of Historic Places listing.
Nellie Verne Walker, was an American sculptor best known for her statue of James Harlan formerly in the National Statuary Hall Collection in the United States Capitol, Washington D.C.
Leon Hermant (1866–1936) was a French-American sculptor best known for his architectural sculpture.
The Eagle's Nest Art Colony, the site known in more modern times as the Lorado Taft Field Campus, was founded in 1898 by American sculptor Lorado Taft on the bluffs flanking the east bank of the Rock River, overlooking Oregon, Illinois. The colony was populated by Chicago artists, all members of the Chicago Art Institute or the University of Chicago art department, who gathered in Ogle County to escape the summer heat of Chicago. The colony complex has been used as a field campus for Northern Illinois University since 66 acres (27 ha) of Lowden State Park were turned over to the university by the state of Illinois.
Erected in 1927, the Victory Monument, created by sculptor Leonard Crunelle, was built to honor the Eighth Regiment of the Illinois National Guard, an African-American unit that served in France during World War I. It is located in the Black Metropolis-Bronzeville District in the Douglas community area of Chicago, Illinois. The structure was added to the National Register of Historic Places on April 30, 1986. It was designated a Chicago Landmark on September 9, 1998. An annual Memorial Day ceremony is held at the monument.
The Lorado Taft Midway Studios are a historic artist studio complex at South Ingleside Avenue and East 60th Street, on the campus of the University of Chicago on the South Side of Chicago. The architecturally haphazard structure, originating as two converted barns and a Victorian house, was used from 1906 to 1929 as the studio of Lorado Taft (1860-1936), one of the most influential sculptors of the period. A National Historic Landmark, it now houses the university's visual arts department.
The Heald Square Monument is a bronze sculpture group by Lorado Taft in Heald Square, Chicago, Illinois. It depicts General George Washington, and the two principal financers of the American Revolution, Robert Morris and Haym Salomon. Following Taft's 1936 death, the sculpture was completed by his associates Leonard Crunelle, Nellie Walker and Fred Torrey.
Fountain of the Great Lakes, or Spirit of the Great Lakes Fountain, is an allegorical sculpture by Lorado Taft in the Art Institute of Chicago South Stanley McCormick Memorial Court south of the Art Institute of Chicago Building in the Loop community area of Chicago. It is a bronze work of art created between 1907 and 1913. The fountain depicts five women arranged so that the water flows through them in the same way water passes through the Great Lakes. Note that the Great Lakes waterflow starts in Lake Superior at 600 feet (180 m) above sea level and continues eastward through each lake until it reaches Lake Ontario and then passes into the St. Lawrence River. The Fountain is one of Taft's best known works.
The Solitude of the Soul refers to one of three known works of sculpture of that name by the American sculptor Lorado Taft, a Midwesterner born in 1860, who was active in the Chicago area from 1885 until his death in 1936. The accompanying photographs show the best-known version, carved in marble and dated 1914, which is among works of American sculpture on display in the Roger McCormick Memorial Court of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Wheeler Williams was an American sculptor, born in Chicago, Illinois.
Clara Barth Leonard Sorenson Dieman (1877–1959) was an American sculptor, painter and teacher from Indianapolis, Indiana.
Leonard Crunelle was a French-born American sculptor especially known for his sculptures of children. Cruelle immigrated with his family to the United States and worked as a coal miner in Decatur, Illinois. Lorado Taft discovered him as a youth and brought him to Chicago where he was an apprentice to the sculptors decorating the 1893 World's Fair Horticultural Exhibit. He studied at the Art Institute of Chicago with Taft.
Bruce Wilder Saville American sculptor born in Quincy, Massachusetts and known for his monuments.
Eternal Silence, alternatively known as the Dexter Graves Monument or the Statue of Death, is a monument in Chicago's Graceland Cemetery and features a bronze sculpture set upon, and backdropped by, black granite. It was created by American sculptor Lorado Taft in 1909.
The Crusader, also known as the Victor Lawson Monument, is a memorial marking the grave of Chicago newspaper publisher Victor Lawson. It is in Chicago's historic Graceland Cemetery and was designed by American sculptor Lorado Taft in 1931.
Fred M. Torrey American sculptor known for his monuments and architectural sculpture. His wife, Mabel Torrey (1886–1974) was also a recognized sculptor who worked with her husband on some commissions.
Mary Hortense Webster (1881–1965) was mainly known as a sculptor. She also had instruction as a painter at the Art Academy of Cincinnati with Barnhorn and Nowattny, the Acadèmie Julian in Paris, Verlet, Waldmann, Paris, with George Hitchcock in Holland, and Charles Hawthorne in Provincetown. Afterwards, she decided to focus on sculpture as her specialty. Webster trained under the distinguished American portrait sculptor Lorado Taft at the Art Institute of Chicago in his Midway studios, the city in which she eventually settled. She was a native to Oberlin, Ohio and one of the early members of the Women's Art Club of Cleveland.