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Hudson Bay Wolves - Philadelphia, PA
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member Math Teacher
N 39° 58.214 W 075° 11.713
18S E 483329 N 4424471
Quick Description: What we have here are two Hudson Bay Gray Wolves disputing ownership of a deer carcass. Gross. Beautiful.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 12/17/2011 5:37:35 PM
Waymark Code: WMDB3W
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member silverquill
Views: 2

Long Description:

Welcome to the Philadelphia Zoological Gardens, aka, The Philadelphia Zoo, home of every imaginable type of animal sculpture. This sculpture is just north of the Avian Center and overlooking Bird Lake, at an intersection, or corner of two walking paths which intersect. The sculpture, made of bronze has long turned green with age and is in desperate need of cleaning. The sculpture is of two wolves over a dead deer. One wolf has the carcass of deer in its mouth and casts a vicious look at the second wolf that crouches nearby. I guess his friend is hungry but the other wolf doesn't want to be friends and keeps the meat for himself.

The SIRIS site lists the location of the sculpture to be at the Wolf Woods but no such place exists at the zoo any more. The wolves were formerly located at Fairmount Park, on the west side of park at the Lansdowne entrance from 1876-1956. It was also relocated again in 1973. I noticed mostly all of these older sculptures were in the park before being placed here. The sculpture cost five thousand dollars and has the distinction of being the very first official acquisition of the newly established Fairmount Park Art Association. In 1973 the sculpture was relocated from the zoo's old wolf woods to the new wolf woods.

The sculptor put his name on the sculpture, Edw d Kemeys 1872. His full name is Edward Keneys. The foundry also has their name on the sculpture as well, Robert Wood & Co./Bronze Founder/Phila. As already stated the sculpture is made of bronze. The base is made of a dark polished granite. SIRIS has the dimensions as: approx. 50 x 82 x 58 in.; Base: approx. 18 1/4 x 93 1/4 x 69 in.

About the Sculptor & Birth of Hudson Bay Wolves

Edward Kemeys (1843 - 1907) was born in Savannah, Georgia but spent his youth in New York City. He received no early formal training in art and was for the most part a self-taught artist. His first job was as an iron worker until the outbreak of the Civil War. Kemeys served in the Union Army during the Civil War attaining the rank of Captain of Artillery. After the war he traveled to Illinois and became a farmer, a venture that failed after just a few years.

Kemeys moved back to New York City and was employed in the construction of Central Park. This is when he first became interested in animals at the Central Park Zoo. It was here by chance that he happened upon someone modeling a wolf's head at the zoo and decided to try sculpture himself. His first sculpture titled The Hudson Bay Wolves was so successful that in 1872 it was commissioned as a monument in Philadelphia's Fairmount Park. SOURCE

This is a rather famous sculpture and is mentioned is several books and internet sites.

TITLE: Hudson Bay Wolves

ARTIST(S): Kemeys, Edward, 1843-1907, sculptor. Robert Wood & Company, founder

DATE: 1872. Installed 1873. Relocated 1956. Relocated 1973.

MEDIUM: Sculpture: bronze; Base: dark polished granite

CONTROL NUMBER: IAS 75009331

Direct Link to the Individual Listing in the Smithsonian Art Inventory: [Web Link]

PHYSICAL LOCATION:
Philadelphia Zoological Garden 34th Street & Girard Avenue Next to Aviation Center Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104


DIFFERENCES NOTED BETWEEN THE INVENTORY LISTING AND YOUR OBSERVATIONS AND RESEARCH:
No Differences noted except the wolves are dirtier


Visit Instructions:
Please give the date of your visit, your impressions of the sculpture, and at least ONE ORIGINAL PHOTOGRAPH. Add any additional information you may have, particularly any personal observations about the condition of the sculpture.
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