January 2014, Art, Fenway

katharine lane weeks

rhinoceros in front of smfa (sonya kovacic)

rhinoceros in front of smfa (sonya kovacic)

The rhinoceros sculpture in front of the School of the Museum of Fines Arts is a dedication to Boston sculptor and SMFA Alum, Katharine Lane Weems. In fact it is a copy of her two Indian Rhinoceroses, Bessie and Victoria, that sit in front of Harvard's Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology. Weems (1899-1989) was born into a family of culturati--her father was once the president of the MFA--and she was known for her animal sculptures.

The National Museum of Wildlife Art of the United States has a quote from Weems. When she was asked why she chose animals as her primary subject matter as opposed to people, Weems commented, "When you're doing a human figure you're always working on the same fundamental chassis; but with animals the variation in composition is infinite; an animal is forever in movement, in different, unconscious grace. And finally, you never have the relatives to contend with!"


Take a look at some photos of Katharine at work.