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Anne L. Poulet with Guilhem Scherf, Ulrike D. Mathies, Christoph Frank, Claude Vandalle, Dean Walker, and Monique Barbier
This catalog accompanied the first international exhibition devoted to Houdon’s art. It presents startlingly lifelike portraits of the most important figures of the time, along with a generous selection of sculptures from Houdon’s entire career. Among his earliest works is a famous life-size plaster anatomical study of the human figure, created when he was a student in Rome. Also represented are portraits of his family and friends, of artists and members of the courts of Europe, and several decorative sculptures. Among his last works are portrait busts of Napoleon and Josephine and a standing figure of Voltaire. Four scholarly essays, along with lavishly illustrated entries for the individual objects, provide insights into the history of this remarkable era and discuss Houdon’s sculpture in the rich context of the period.