Janet Scudder

Alt text: Bronze sculpture of a skipping toddler
Alt text: Bronze sculpture of a skipping toddler

Janet Scudder (American, 1873-1940)
Frog Baby Fountain, 1901
Bronze, dark brown patina
12 ⅛ H. x 8 W. x 5 ¾ D. inches
Signed at rear vertical edge of self bronze base: JANET SCUDDER © GORHAM CO.FOUNDERS/ QUI / Gorham cipher

Alt text: Bronze sculpture of a child holding a seashell
Alt text: Bronze sculpture of a child holding a seashell
Alt text: Bronze sculpture of a child holding a seashell
Alt text: Bronze sculpture base, foundry detail
Alt text: Bronze sculpture base, signature detail
Alt text: Bronze sculpture, underside detail

Janet Scudder (American, 1873-1940)
Shell Baby, circa 1915
Bronze, dark green patina
15 ¼ H. x 5 ½ W. x 6 ½ D. inches
Signed on base: JANET SCUDDER
Inscribed on base: ROMAN BRONZE WORKS N – Y –

Artist Description

Janet Scudder’s career owes a debt of gratitude to the jubilant “Frog Baby” fountain in establishing her as a garden sculptor. The first casting was produced in Paris, which Scudder brought back to New York in hopes that it would help her secure patrons. Through a fortuitous meeting with renowned architect Stanford White, she sold him the sculpture for his Long Island estate. He was so thrilled with the purchase that he recommended her to a number of clients, establishing a fruitful working relationship between the two that led to Scudder’s recognition as a fountain and garden sculptor. She dedicated an entire chapter to this work in her autobiography, describing that inspiration for the sculpture occurred when a young boy wandered into her studio: “In that moment, a finished work flashed before me. I saw a little boy dancing, laughing, chuckling all to himself while a spray of water dashed over him. The idea of my Frog Fountain was born.” She enjoyed depicting children because of the vibrancy with which they carry out each movement, adding a dynamic aspect of youthfulness to her work.

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