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Sculptor of the Lincoln Memorial

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oday contemporary sculpture lines the paths and rests in the gardens. You may turn the corner to find a kinetic aluminum frame by George Rickey turning lightly in the wind, or walk through an arch in the garden hedge to find a sheer form in glass, gleaming pale blue, like an iceberg.

A hundred years ago, the work was marble. In a studio with tall windows letting in the north light, Daniel Chester French created the figure of Abraham Lincoln for the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C.

French was a monumental sculptor, well-known in his lifetime. He and his wife bought an old farmhouse here in 1896 and made it their summer home, and here he worked in metal and bronze, in a classical style. He is also known for the the bronze Minute Man in Concord.

His daughter worked to create the museum and to make the house and studio, the gardens and woodland trail a site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. And today artists in residence come here to create new work.