Lorado Taft

CFA Service: 1925–1929

The sculptor Lorado Taft is known for his well-crafted civic works, often in commemorative settings. He received his initial training at the University of Illinois at Urbana and studied at the …cole des Beaux-Arts from 1880 to 1883. Upon his return to the United States, he established his studio in Chicago, where he worked for more than fifty years. Taft designed the Columbus Fountain at Union Station in Washington, D.C., and works for the World's Columbian Exposition in 1893, both in collaboration with Daniel Burnham, as well as the Fountain of Time for Chicago's Midway Plaisance. Taft combined his artistic pursuits with an active teaching career, serving as a lecturer and instructor at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1886 to 1929, lecturer at the University of Chicago from 1893 to 1900, and as a professor of art at the University of Illinois from 1919 onward, and he was a popular lecturer on sculpture across the country. He wrote the seminal work on nineteenth-century American sculpture, The History of American Sculpture, and the later work Modern Tendencies in Sculpture. He was a member of the National Academy, the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters; headed the National Sculpture Society in the 1920s; and served on the Board of Art Advisors of Illinois. He was the recipient of numerous awards and prizes, honorary degrees, and was an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects. Taft's papers reside in collections at the Smithsonian Archives of American Art, the University of Illinois, and the Art Institute of Chicago.