Sculptor Meta Warrick Fuller (pronounced Mee-ta), 1877-1968, was a longtime Framingham, Mass. resident. The Danforth Museum of Art has newly opened a room devoted to her lifetime of work which includes a reconstruction of the corner in which she sculpted. Fuller worked for many years in a corner of her family’s Framingham attic, in spite of opposition from her husband and in between the demands of three children.
Fuller grew up in Philadelphia, in a family that supported her education and artistic ambitions. As a young woman, she spent three years studying in Paris and met Rodin, who encouraged her.
Fuller’s half figure is on display through May 3rd in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Originally modeled in 1913 for the Emancipation Exposition in New York City, this woman with her somber gaze is part of a group of three life size figures and a tree. The plaster version of this large group, titled “Emancipation Proclamation” was stored in a garage after Fuller’s death. Against all odds, the work survived and was finally restored and cast in bronze in 1999, when the entire monument was dedicated in Harriet Tubman Square in Boston’s South End.
This piece is on loan from Boston’s National Center of Afro-American Artists.