Giovanni Boldini

Copied Malvina Hoffman, Giovanni Boldini, 1928, bronze on integral base, 20 5810 1210 14 in. (52.426.726.1 cm.), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Charles Lamson Hoffman Family, 1985.73.2

Artwork Details

Giovanni Boldini
Roman Bronze Works
Not on view
20 5810 1210 14 in. (52.426.726.1 cm.)
right incised: BOLDINI (underlined)/MALVINA HOFFMAN/PARIS 1928 (written on an angle) back lower right incised: ROMAN BRONZE, N.Y. back lower left in ink: F9 inside botton incised: RB110
Credit Line
Gift of the Charles Lamson Hoffman Family
Mediums Description
bronze on integral base
  • Figure
  • Occupation — art — painter
  • Portrait male — Boldini, Giovanni — head
Object Number

Artwork Description

Malvina Hoffman modeled this bust of Giovanni Boldini as he approached the end of his life. Boldini was an Italian painter whose portraits were in high demand among the Paris elite. Among his works are portraits of other artists, including American painter James McNeill Whistler and French impressionist Edgar Degas. Boldini was impatient and, according to Hoffman, “was very skeptical as to my ability to do the work quickly enough to keep from irritating him.” This bust portrait was made for the Brooklyn Museum, where it was placed next to Boldini’s painting of Whistler. Hoffman’s portrait pleased the Italian so much that he requested a copy for himself.

Luce Object Quote

“It was a delightful experience to know him, as he is a bubbling conversationalist . . . and he has a brilliant sense of caustic humor.” Malvina Hoffman, 1965