Evelyn Beatrice Longman (1874-1954) was the first woman sculptor to be elected a full member of the National Academy of Design in 1919. Her allegorical figure works were commissioned as monuments and memorials, adornment for public buildings, and attractions at art expositions in early 20th-century America.
Born in 1874 on a farm near Winchester, Ohio, Longman resolved to become a sculptor after visiting the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. Longman studied with Lorado Taft at the Art Institute of Chicago, and later moved to New York, where she studied with Hermon Atkins MacNeil and Daniel Chester French. Her large-scale sculpture a male “Victory” first came to the attention of the public in the 1904 St. Louis Exposition. Her bronze doors for the chapel of the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland, were a result of a competition of 33 sculptors.
In 1915, AT&T commissioned Longman’s colossal Genius of Electricity to crown the corporate headquarters of the Telephone and Telegraph Building, New York City, preceded the commission in Des Moines.
She also created decorative sculpture works for the Lincoln Memorial (Washington,D.C.).
Longman received many prizes and awards, including the prestigious Watrous Gold Medal for best sculpture.
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