The Frederick Hart Studio Museum is the faithful re-creation of the studio Hart built in 1988 at Chesley, the family farm in Hume, Virginia. Sculpting tools, original clay, molds, plasters, and inspirational memorabilia are pulled together to bring to life the creative process of one of America’s preeminent sculptors of the last century and to ensure that his legacy continues to shape the future of art.
Plaster models for Ex Nihilo: Fragment No. 2 and Figure No. 7 lead to Hart’s office desk. The items placed on the desk by Hart’s wife, Lindy Hart and two sons, Lain and Alexander Hart, are items typically found there on any given day. A photograph of Hart and his mentor Roger Morigi has pride of place on the wall above the desk. Just to the right is the plaster model of Saint Peter, one the three trumeau figures for Washington National Cathedral.
Plaster models for Ex Nihilo figures and fragments are displayed throughout the museum. Also pictured is the plaster model of Adam, one of the trumeau figures.
Plaster model for Ex Nihilo Figure No. 6 and the plaster models for Celebration.
Plaster model for Ex Nihilo, Working Model.
On display are many prototypes of Hart’s ground-breaking cast clear acrylic works. Some pieces feature Hart’s notations in indelible marker denoting changes to be made in composition or in cuts for faceting. Also on display are plaster models for acrylic prototypes offering a unique window into the complete acrylic process including the patented embedment technique.
Plaster models for Ex Nihilo: Figure No. 7 and Saint Peter and Saint Paul. Also pictured is the plaster model for Daughters of Odessa. An editioned bronze of Daughters of Odessa was presented to HRH Charles, Prince of Wales.
Plaster models (left to right) for Ex Nihilo: Fragment No. 2, Fragment No.7, and Fragment No. 3 surround Hart’s worktables and desk. Inspired by music Hart listened to an eclectic collection of tapes and CDs which have been saved and serve as a soundtrack enhancing the immersive quality of the museum experience.
A worktable holds a grouping of molds, plaster models, and acrylic prototypes based on photographs and recollections of Hart’s family. Belmont University is the sole repository of this one-of-a-kind collection from the working studio of Frederick Hart, American master sculptor.
Plaster model for the James Earl Carter Presidential Statue, bronze, Georgia State Capitol, Atlanta, Georgia,1994 (foreground).
Plaster model, Daughters of Odessa, foreground. Plaster models for Saint Peter and Saint Paul in the background.
Christ Rising, bronze,1978, atrium Lila D. Bunch Library.