Francis Edwin Elwell
Francis Edwin Elwell (also cited as Frank Edwin Elwell) (1858–1922) was an American sculptor. From 1903 to 1905, he served as curator of ancient and modern sculpture at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Elwell was born in Concord, Massachusetts, on June 15, 1858. He was a great-grandson of Ephraim Farrar, a Minuteman who fought at Concord Bridge on April 19, 1775; a grandson of Elisha Farrar of Concord's literary circle, and son of John Wesley and Clara Farrar Elwell.
Elwell received his first instruction in art from May Alcott’s sister, Abigail May Alcott, who also taught noted sculptor Daniel Chester French. He studied at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, then moved in 1881 to Paris to study at the École des Beaux-Arts and later privately with Alexandre Falguière. Elwell later studied under French and shared a studio with him in New York City.
Elwell’s works are numerous and varied. He exhibited at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, and later served as curator of ancient and modern sculpture at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Elwell is further represented in the Senate’s Vice Presidential Bust Collection by a marble bust of Garret A. Hobart.
In 1905, Elwell clashed with the Met's acting director, George H. Story. In response, the museum's trustees closed the sculpture department, fired Elwell, and had him escorted from the museum by a policeman.
- Death of Strength, (1888), on the tomb of Frederik Hendrik Pont at the cemetery around the Grote Kerk at Edam, North Holland
- Dickens and Little Nell (1890), Clark Park, bought by the Fairmount Park Art Association, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Received 1891 gold medal from Philadelphia Art Club, 1893 gold medal from World’s Columbian Exposition.
- Levi P. Morton (1891), marble bust in the U.S. Senate.
- Diana and the Lion (1893), Art Institute of Chicago.
- Egypt Awaking, bought at the Paris Salon of 1896 by M. Gabriel Goupillat of Paris.
- Equestrian statue of General Winfield Scott Hancock (1896), on the battlefield of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
- New Life (1899), Lowell cemetery, Lowell, Massachusetts, property of Hon. Charles Sumner Lilley, called the "Bonney Memorial." (plaster in Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts).
- Orchid (1899), owned by Theodore B. Starr, New York City.
- Pan-American Fountain (1901).
- Intelligence (1901), in front of New York state building for the Pan-American Exposition, Buffalo, New York.
- Elihu Yale (1901), Yale Club of New York City.
- Colonel Robert Van Horn, (1906), marble bust, Van Horn High School, Independence, Missouri
- Seventh Rhode Island Infantry Memorial at the Vicksburg, Mississippi National Military Park.
- Bust of Mr. Peter Esselmont, Lord Provost of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, Scotland
- Memorial to Edwin Booth, Mount Auburn, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
- Aqua Viva, property of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City.
- Andrew McMillan Memorial, Utica, New York.
- Manuscripts: The Metropolitan Museum of Art Libraries
- A Notable Advisory Board (1922). American Biography: A New Cyclopedia 12. New York City: The American Historical Society. pp. 259–261. Retrieved 1 June 2012.
- Elwell bio at AskArt.com
- Taft, Lorado (1903 (reprinted 1969)). The History of American Sculpture. New York: Macmillan (reprinted by Ayer Company Publishing). ISBN 0-405-02228-X.
- Levi P. Morton bust in the U.S. Senate
- "Museum's Trustees Oust Curator Elwell," NYT, October 17, 1905.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Francis Edwin Elwell.|
- 1898 article about Elwell by Theodore Dreiser in the New York Times
- 1910 photo of Dickens and Little Nell at PhillyHistory.org
- Dickens and Little Nell at Philart.net
- Photos of Rhode Island infantry memorial in Vicksburg
- Francis Edwin Elwell Papers from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, including many letters to Elwell
- Article on the Frank Edwin Elwell Papers from The Metropolitan Museum of Art Libraries