“Benjamin Franklin” by Jean-Jacques Caffieri
This “Benjamin Franklin” by Jean-Jacques Caffiéri was created while Franklin was serving as ambassador to France. Franklin was delighted to sit for this bust by the royal sculptor to King Louis XV of France.
Franklin was aware that his image was in demand, so he ordered eight plaster versions, which he gave to friends. This is one of the eight based on the original.
The original bust signed and dated 1777, is in the Bibliotheque Mazarine in Paris. Franklin charmed the French with what they perceived as rustic New World genius.
Benjamin Franklin (1706 – 1790) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. Franklin was a renowned polymath and a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, Freemason, postmaster, scientist, inventor, humorist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat.
As the first United States Ambassador to France, he exemplified the emerging American nation.
His colorful life and legacy of scientific and political achievement and his status as one of America’s most influential Founding Fathers have seen Franklin honored in many ways.
Including the naming of many towns, counties, educational institutions, and corporations, as well as many cultural references to Benjamin Franklin.
Jean-Jacques Caffieri was appointed royal sculptor to Louis XV and is best known for his portrait busts, in terracotta or marble. He was born in Paris and came from a family of sculptors from Italy.
- Title: Benjamin Franklin
- Artist: Jean-Jacques Caffiéri
- Year: 1777
- Material: Painted plaster
- Dimensions: 28 x 19 1/4 x 12 in. ( 71.1 x 48.9 x 30.5 cm )
- Museum: New-York Historical Society
- Name: Jean-Jacques Caffieri
- Born: 1725 – Paris, France
- Died: 1792
- Nationality: France
- Notable works:
- Portrait bust of a young woman
- Portrait of Jean-Baptiste Poquelin – Molière
Ben Franklin: The Art of Communication
A Tour of the New-York Historical Society
- “Tontine Coffee House, N.Y.C.” by Francis Guy
- Saint-Gaudens Double Eagle, 1933
- Pewterers’ Banner 1788
- Benjamin Franklin Bust
- Tiffany Lamps by Clara Driscoll & Louis Comfort Tiffany
A Tour of New York Museums
- Metropolitan Museum of Art – MET
- Museum of Modern Art, NYC
- Intrepid, Sea, Air & Space Museum
- Neue Galerie New York
- The Cloisters
- Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
- American Museum of Natural History
- Museum of the City of New York
- New-York Historical Society
- Frick Collection
- Met Breuer
- Rubin Museum of Art
- Whitney Museum of American Art
- Brooklyn Museum
“He that can have patience can have what he will.”
– Benjamin Franklin
Photo Credit: JOM