Concord, Mass - On location and with hardly any time to update my notes on the production of “Daniel Chester French: American Sculptor”.
Every day comes with new revelations, even if anticipated and previewed on Google searches, nothing compares to the feeling of being right there in front of the referenced work of art. I’m thinking of the glorious doors at the Boston Public Library for which the Afro-American model Hattie Anderson modeled for “Truth” in one of the panels. But I’m also thinking of the John Boyle O’Reilly Monument, and the George White Memorial in Boston; and the John Harvard at Harvard’s Yard which parents and students approach for a photo opportunity just as tourists do at the Lincoln Memorial, another extraordinary work by Dabiel Chester French, this remarkable and forgotten American which we’re know exploring in this new documentary film, already schedule to premiere on May 26. For more information regarding the screening, please visit Chesterwood.
On a different note, we visited and interviewed Michael Richman in Portland, Maine. Mr. Richman was the first biographer of Daniel Chester French and a legendary figure in the realm of French scholars. Prior that interview I met with historian Harold Holzer at The Roosevelt Hose in New York to learn about his “The Monument Man”, his biographical approach to the artist and a formidable read which contextualizes the sculptors efforts in the political landscape. The sacle in New York also allowed for a conversation with Adrian Benepe, President & CEO at The Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Mr. Benepe’s knowledge of public sculpture in New York brings a new perspective to our film, particularly in the connection between French and Augustus Saint Gaudens, one of the most well know and accomplished of his contemporaries.
I will be updating this entry with more details in the following days. Typos will be fixed!