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Now on View: Animal Bronzes

James Carder

A new Museum exhibition, Animal Bronzes, recently opened in the Bliss Gallery at Dumbarton Oaks. The artworks on display highlight Mildred and Robert Woods Bliss’s collection of bronze animal sculptures that come from a wide variety of ancient cultures, including the Chinese, Egyptian, Scythian, Roman, and Incan. The Blisses' fondness for animals and birds was well known, and they seemed to delight in discovering how various cultures artistically interpreted these creatures. The artworks in the Bliss Gallery are of relatively small scale; however, the nearby Byzantine Courtyard Gallery features a large-scale ancient bronze horse, acquired by the Blisses in 1938 in anticipation of their gift of the Collection to Harvard University in 1940.

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