Where can I find classical female statuary in Wash., D.C.?
May 27, 2007 12:20 AM   Subscribe

Where can I find classical-type female statuary in Washington, D.C.?

I had a really great time photographing the classical-style sculptures in the Smithsonian Museum of American Art and I'd love to find more museums and institutions with like collections. I'd prefer female statuary as I'm just not as interested in classical depictions of males, but feel free to point them out too.

Bonus points for:

— Metro accessable
— Relaxed area (no big crowds)
— Dramatic lighting
— No velvet rope (more composition options if I can get close, ground level, not just a frieze figure 50 feet up)
— Fountains and gardens welcome
— Actual antiquities, but any derivative style is acceptable (angels, neo-classical, etc.)
— Full-body sculptures

Thanks for the help!
posted by cowbellemoo to Media & Arts (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Sure you don't mind using a zoom? The east front of the Capitol Building has an abundance of classical female statuary on its facade, as well as one perched above on the top of the dome. Taking a tour, will also get you inside the building where you can grab a photo of Liberty in the Genius of the Constitution in National Statuary Hall, as well as Clio in the Car of History in the same chamber.

Here's a page with all such art available for previewing. There are plaster models of the artwork on the House facade located at a tunnel nexus, found on the basement floor of the Canon office building (just enter, go through security, and take the steps down to an underground "rotunda." You can walk right up to them, set on the floor on bases.

On the grounds near the Capitol, you can go visit the statue at the Peace Circle on the Northwest corner of the grounds. Also, just west from the Southwest corner and across from the the US Botanical Garden is the Barthodli fountain with some classical women incorporated into the fountain (currently de-watered for repair).

I believe, but not positively, that there are some classical women incorporated into the fountain at Dupont Circle.
posted by Atreides at 6:41 AM on May 27, 2007 [1 favorite]

I was going to suggest the plaster models in the Canon Basement, too! I suggest not going there between 10 and 3 or so, as the area is often swamped with tourists doing Capitol tours. Otherwise, you'll have the area to yourself, mostly.

There's also the Neptune Fountain in front of the Jefferson building of the Library of Congress.
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:46 AM on May 27, 2007

Response by poster: Ah yes, I've been to the Posiedon fountain. And the nice fountain at Union Station.

I don't currently have a long zoom lens, just a 50mm. That focal length is like normal portraiture, close enough to reach out and touch.
posted by cowbellemoo at 10:12 AM on May 27, 2007

Have they undraped the ones at the Justice Department?
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 10:13 AM on May 27, 2007

Best answer: This is a bit of DC trivia and a beautiful location to boot: the statue of Joan of Arc in the middle of Meridian Hill Park is small bu striking, and (here's the trivia) the only equestrian statue of a woman in the city. Sadly, her sword is missing above the hilt.
posted by kittyprecious at 5:48 PM on May 27, 2007

Best answer: If you want a more close-up look at the Statue of Freedom from the Capitol dome, the plaster model used to make it is in the basement of the Russell Senate building. Setting is crap and there may be crowds, but it's kinda neat.
posted by naoko at 1:11 AM on May 28, 2007

Response by poster: Just for the archives, I found a book that I'm going to try and get called The Outdoor Sculpture of Wash., D.C., a Comprehensive Historic Guide, James Goode, Smithsonian Press.

Thanks again, all!
posted by cowbellemoo at 9:47 PM on May 30, 2007

« Older Are these Cubs tickets authentic?   |   Is East Hollywood Right for Us? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.