Old photograph of a woman in a baggy work jacket standing in a slanted roofed attic with sculptures all around and a window in the back right.

In the Studio
The Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller Collection

Danforth Art is proud to be the caretaker of the Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller Special Collection. This collection consists of ephemera, process pieces, studies, and other objects of art that expand upon some of the better-known aspects of Fuller’s oeuvre.

Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller (1877–1968), an American sculptor, is known for her groundbreaking depictions of the African and African-American experience. Throughout the 1910s and 1920s, she created intimate portraits of friends and family, self-portraits, and commissioned works for national and international expositions.  Anticipating themes of the Harlem Renaissance, Fuller used the figure as metaphor to represent broad themes as African-American artists and intelligentsia sought to formulate and celebrate an African-American cultural identity and express racial experience and social issues in America. Works such as the Study for Ethiopia Awakening and Study for the Spirit of Emancipation (both in the collection of the Danforth Art Museum) celebrate African heritage while expressing aspirations for the future.

The Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller Special Collection consists of ephemera, process pieces, studies, and other objects that expand upon some of the better-known aspects of Fuller’s sculptural work. The entire collection is on view in this gallery in open storage and in a re-creation of Fuller’s first studio in Framingham, which was in the attic of her home (c. 1920). The collection spans seventy years of creative output from Fuller’s early works in Paris, to her role as a precursor to and in the Harlem Renaissance, to her late works celebrating members of the African-American intelligentsia. The Danforth Art Museum is committed to the stewardship, exploration, and exhibition of this important collection, which will be continually on view at the Museum.

Check out this recent article in Magazine Antiques about Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, utilizing a number of images from the Danforth’s collection of her works.  Meta and her studio collection were also featured in Chronicle, which can be watched here!

Dates: Permanently on view
Participating artists: Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller
Young African American boy standing but slightly crouched carrying a clay jug on one hip with a second fallen over on its side by his feet.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Waterboy I , 1930, Painted plaster
African American man, seated with head tilted slightly upward with a tired, sad expression
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Lazy Bones II , 1933, Plaster
Bronze colored painted plaster bust of a young African American boy with short curly hair and a calm facial expression
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Bust of a Young Boy (Solomon Fuller, Jr.) , 1914, Painted plaster
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Danse Macabre , 1914, Painted plaster
Reverse mold with a laurel wreath boarder containing busts of three African Americans, Sojorner Truth, Frederic Douglas, and Harriet Tubman.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Mold for Crusaders for Freedom , 1962, Plaster with mold release agent
Painted plaque with a wide decorative boarder with three men kneeling holding various objects and gold halos behind their heads.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Te Adoremus Domine , 1921, Painted plaster
Plaster statuette of three children gathered around a woman, seated reading a book.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Storytime , 1961, Painted plaster
Clay bust from waist up of a woman with head looking right and resting on her right hand.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Reverie , n.d., Plasticene
Bisque portrait bust of a young woman with short hair.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Self-Portrait , n.d., Unfired Clay
Standing figure of painted plaster with a mummy wrapping dress in tan and a woman emerging from the top with brown skin and a blue head dress.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Maquette for Ethiopia Awakening , 1921, Painted plaster
Small sculpture of a mother seated, hunched over, holding a small child barely visible on her lap.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Secret Sorrow (Mother and Child) , c. 1914, Bronze
Red mold for a Phillis Wheatley Plaque
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Mold for Phillis Wheatley , n.d., Resin mold
Round plaque with a gold border surrounding a woman in profile from the shoulder up. She is wearing a blue hooded garment with red interior, and she has a halo behind her.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Mold of Sanctus , c. 1965, Painted plaster
Painted rectangular plaque of an African mother in a tan head scarf holding up and kissing a small baby.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Mother and Child, Painted plaster
Portrait bust on a tall rectangular base of an African man, looking slightly downward. His face is narrow and angular, with short cropped hair.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Negro Poet (Portrait of Maxwell Nicy Hayson) , c. 1920s, Painted plaster
Small clay sculpture of several child like figures under a large hand that is reaching out to them.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Maquette for Spirit of Emancipation , c. 1913 , Plaster
Sculpture on a wooden platform of a young boy scout looking out into the distance holding a pair of binoculars.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Boy Scout, Plaster
Photograph of a sculpture with a flat background, with a group of five females, two adults and three kids, embracing.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Immigrant in America , 1915, Plaster
Profile of a man, seated, holding a staff and wearing an ornate hat. Text to the upper right says "Menelik 2 King of the Kings of Ethiopia Emperor of Abyssinia 1864 to 1913"
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Menelik II in Profile , 1914, Painted plaster
Round plaque in brown with three medical and one patient in the center, surrounded by symbols of the medical field.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Model for Union Hospital , 1961, Painted plaster
Green square plaster plaque of a man's face in profile to the right. Below are the words 'Samuel Coleridge Taylor'.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Samuel Coleridge Taylor , 1914, Painted plaster
Small sculpture painted bronze of a woman standing with a raised flag, wind blow, in front of a mass of cloth and bodies of soldiers.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Victory Figure, Painted plaster
Small painted sculpture of a woman with her hair in a bun and wearing a loose flowing outfit, leaning against a hip-height wall.
Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller, Woman Leaning on Wall , c. 1955, Painted plaster
The Danforth Art Museum at Framingham State University is home to the largest collection of work and ephemera by the twentieth-century sculptor Meta Vaux Warrick Fuller. the Danforth—Plan Your Visit