Malvina Hoffman

born New York City 1885-died New York City 1966
Media - J0119899_1b.jpg - 89832
Malvina Hoffman, © Peter A. Juley & Son Collection, Smithsonian American Art Museum J0119899
Also known as
  • Malvina Cornell Hoffman
New York, New York, United States
New York, New York, United States
  • American

Sculptor. She studied painting with John White Alexander at the Art Students League and sculpture with Gutzon Borglum and Auguste Rodin. On commission from the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, she sculpted for exhibition display 100 ethnic types, which she titled the Living Races of Man (1929–1933).

Joan Stahl American Artists in Photographic Portraits from the Peter A. Juley & Son Collection (Washington, D.C. and Mineola, New York: National Museum of American Art and Dover Publications, Inc., 1995)

Luce Artist Biography

Malvina Hoffman was encouraged to study art at a young age. She began as a painter, and made her first sculpture of her father, a concert pianist and composer. After he died, Hoffman and her mother moved to London, and then Paris, where she convinced Auguste Rodin to take her on as an apprentice. She traveled to distant countries including Japan, India, China, Bali, and Burma, creating 105 sculptures of people from around the world for the Chicago Field Museum’s “Hall of Man.” Although her artwork made her famous, she also used her sculpting ability to help others by making prosthetic limbs and medical models for prenatal study.