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 Blanche Nevin  (1838 - 1925)

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Lived/Active: Pennsylvania      Known for: sculptor-portrait-figure

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Sculptor Blanche Nevin was born in 1838 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  She studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, in Philadelphia, and with Joseph Bailly.  Her sculpture of John Peter Gabriel Muhlenberg may be seen in the United States Capitol Building, Washington, D.C.  Muhlenberg, the Revolutionary War hero, is sculpted in a Neo-Classical* style, standing in his general's uniform of the Continental Army.  Donated to the U.S. government in 1889 by the State of Pennsylvania, it is part of the National Statuary Hall Collection, located in the small House rotunda.

In 1876, Nevin exhibited two sculptures, Eve and Cinderella at the Centennial International Exposition, in Philadelphia.  In 1893, she exhibited at another International Exposition, in Chicago, Illinois, a piece titled Maud Muller, based on a John Greenleaf Whittier poem.  It was a very popular work, receiving much attention.  Nevin was a poet, as well as a sculptor, so it is not surprising that she was attracted to a character in the Whittier poem.

Blanche Nevin's work appears in the following publications: In 1955, Monumental Press, of Washington, D.C., published Myrtle Cheney Murdock's book, "National Statuary Hall in the Nation's Capitol". In the Winter 1975-1976 issue, The Feminist Art Journal published an article by Judith Paine, "The Women's Pavilion of 1876". The U.S. Government Printing Office published, in 1976, "Art in the United States Capitol".

Blanche Nevin lived near Churchtown, in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, renovating, as her home, the Windsor Forges, an iron-producing site dating from the Revolutionary period.  She died there in 1925.

Jules and Nancy Heller, North American Women Artists of the 20th Century


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