The Frick Announces Two Important Acquisitions: Eighteenth-Century Sculptures Given by Eugene V. Thaw and The Quentin Foundation

Marble bust of a woman draped in a garment that exposes her shoulders with long, curly hair pulled back away from her face

The Frick Collection has accepted into its celebrated holdings two important gifts of art. Collector Eugene V. Thaw has given the Frick a marble bust by Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741–1828), a portrait of Madame His. Comments Director Anne L. Poulet, who, in 2003, organized the acclaimed retrospective touring exhibition, Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment, “It is a great pleasure to see this sculpture find a permanent home at The Frick Collection, an institution celebrated for its holdings in French eighteenth-century painting, sculpture, and decorative arts. I know this portrait well, and it is a work of exquisite beauty and refinement, as well as a rare surviving example that preserves Houdon’s original luminous surface treatment. Madame His is currently on view in the North Hall, where the bust will remain through the end of the year. It is one of the only known examples in the world that remain in this remarkable state of preservation. The fact that the provenance of Madame His is known from the time it was carved by Houdon is also of significance. This acquisition is, indeed, a superb addition to the Frick, and we thank Eugene Thaw for his generosity.”

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