Wwas a noted nineteenth-century portrait sculptor. In 1892, celebrated European sculptress, Elisabet Ney, built a small neoclassical studio in the remote natural setting of Hyde Park, Austin, Texas.
In this studio, Ney sculpted the great men of frontier Texas, among them, life-sized figures of Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston that stand today in the national and state capitols. Ney also assembled in this studio her earlier sculptures of European notables, among them, King Ludwig II of Bavaria, King George V of Hanover, Otto von Bismarck, Giuseppi Garibaldi, Justus von Liebig, Arthur Schopenhauer and Jacob Grimm, all cherished portraits Ney rendered from life as a young artist.
University of Texas Art DepartmentBy the turn of the century, Elisabet Ney's Hyde Park studio had become a gathering place for influential Texans drawn to the colorful character of "Miss Ney" and to the stimulating discussions of politics and ideas that took place there. Inspired by Ney's "revolutionary" idea that art and beauty have been and can be powerful forces in the shaping of a nation as well as in individuals, these early Texans went on to found the University of Texas Art Department, the Texas Commission on the Arts, the Texas Fine Arts Association and museums and art schools throughout the state.
The Elisabet Ney Museum is currently planning to restore and preserve the landscape cultivated by Elisabet Ney as part of her studio during her residence at the site from 1892 to 1907. The landscape restoration will complete the restoration of the museum as a national, state, and local historic landmark begun in 1980 with the restoration of the studio building. The project is supported in part by a grant from the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
The Elisabet Ney MuseumFollowing Elisabet Ney's death in 1907, her friends preserved the studio and its contents as the Elisabet Ney Museum, dedicated to honoring the memory of Elisabet Ney and to fulfilling her humanitarian ideas and visions for the people of Texas. The Elisabet Ney Museum continues in this tradition today. Over seventeen thousand visitors from all fifty states and over twenty countries visit the museum annually to learn of Elisabet Ney and early Texas history. As a National Historic Landmark, thousands of schoolchildren visit the museum each year as part of their curricula studies. Venerated as one of the oldest museums in Texas, the Elisabet Ney Museum offers visitors a lovingly preserved glimpse into early Texas history and into the life of a creative and spirited woman who lived life passionately. The museum continues to be a place where people of all ages can renew their links with the past as it is experienced not only in the life and spirit of Elisabet Ney, but also in the great men and women whose spirits are embodied in their portraits: Schopenhauer's grand philosophies, Stephen F. Austin's quiet heroism, the gallantry of Giuseppi Garibaldi and the fantasy of Ludwig II and his Bavarian castles, all under one roof- the cherished legacy of Elisabet Ney.
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