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Part of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts
Jean Antoine Houdon (French, Versailles 1741–1828 Paris)
Date: 1787Accession Number: 62.55
Balthasar Permoser (German, Kammer, near Otting, Chiemgau, Bavaria 1651–1732 Dresden)
Date: ca. 1680–85Accession Number: 2002.468
Antonio Canova (Italian, Possagno 1757–1822 Venice)
Date: 1804–6Accession Number: 67.110.1
Franz Xaver Messerschmidt (German, Weisensteig 1736–1783 Pressburg)
Date: ca. 1770–83Accession Number: 2010.24
Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux (French, Valenciennes 1827–1875 Courbevoie)
Date: 1865–67Accession Number: 67.250
Jean-Louis Lemoyne (French, 1665–1755)
Date: 1739–40Accession Number: 67.197
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The Carroll and Milton Petrie European Sculpture Court features large-scale sculpture presented chronologically from the east end to the west end of the gallery. These mythological, allegorical, and historical works highlight the range of expressive content and visual effects that can be achieved in stone and metal. The material is all-important in sculpture—affecting how light and shadow play across the surface, and furthering the ambition of the design. Carving projecting limbs in stone, for example, requires tremendous skill since the potential for breakage is great. With bronze, sculptors could create a deep, lustrous finish by applying varnishes or chemicals to the surface to form a patina. This coloration also occurs naturally over time as a result of the metal's exposure to air. Several of the works in this gallery were originally displayed in palace gardens, acting as dramatic focal points in carefully arranged natural settings.
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