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By the numbers

Sculpture of Princeton

sculpture by Rudolf Hoflehner

“Human Condition” by Rudolf Hoflehner

Princeton NJ -- Among the notable features of the Princeton campus is the University’s impressive outdoor art collection, which is highlighted in a new edition of the book “Sculpture of Princeton University.”

Princeton is home to one of the country’s most dramatic permanent displays of major 20th-century sculpture, the Putnam Collection. The collection, funded by an anonymous donor, is a memorial to John Putnam Jr. of Princeton’s class of 1945, who was killed in World War II.

Works in the Putnam Collection include:

• “Five Disks: One Empty” by Alexander Calder. Alfred Barr Jr. of Princeton’s class of 1922, a member of the Putnam selections committee and a longtime friend of Calder, approached the famed American artist to “discuss a monumental work designed especially for Princeton.” After responding that he would find it “fun to make something especially for you, and quite big,” Calder created the 26-foot-tall steel sculpture, which was installed in 1971 in Fine Hall Plaza.

• “Oval with Points” by British sculptor Henry Moore. The bronze sculpture, located between Stanhope Hall and West College, is 11 feet tall and weighs two and a half tons. Within a few months of its delivery on campus in 1971, the interior curves of the oval had been burnished through contact with bodies sitting on it “to the delight of the sculptor.” The sculpture bears a relationship to one of Moore’s favorite found objects — an elephant skull acquired in East Africa by scientist Julian Huxley and his wife Juliette.

• “Head of a Woman” by Pablo Picasso. Picasso’s piece, constructed of folded and painted sheet metal, was only slightly larger than one foot high. Princeton’s version, nearly 16 feet high, was assembled by Norwegian artist Carl Nesjar, who served as an intermediary between Picasso and the Putnam Collection. The concrete sculpture originally was located in front of McCormick Hall in 1971 and was moved to the lawn in front of Spelman Hall in 2002.

The 2004 edition of “Sculpture” includes new illustrations and descriptions of campus installations that are not part of the Putnam Collection, as well as new locations for some of the Putnam pieces.

Works added to the new edition include: “Human Condition” (at left) by Rudolf Hoflehner, located between McCormick and Clio halls; “Public Table” by Scott Burton, located between East Pyne and Murray-Dodge halls; and “The Hedgehog and the Fox” by Richard Serra, located between Peyton and Fine halls next to Princeton Stadium.

Copies of “Sculpture,” which was published by the Office of Communications in association with the University Art Museum, can be purchased at the museum shop and at the Princeton University Store.