Prominent in France during the Enlightenment period of the late 18th
and early 19th centuries, Jean-Antoine Houdon was a neo-classical
sculptor, especially noted for his marble portrait busts and
statues. His subjects included Americans Benjamin Franklin,
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Robert Fulton, and among his
French subjects were Denis Diderot, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Louis XVI
and Napoléon Bonaparte.
For King Louis, he did numerous statues for
the gardens of Versailles. Houdon was a continuous exhibitor at the
French Salon, and works included many of the above mentioned personages
as well as Prince Henry of Prussia, Catharine of Russia, Voltaire, the playwrig
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