(Jan. 31, 1882-Dec. 28, 1934). Born in Indianapolis, Richards studied art at the John Herron Art Institute under painter J. Ottis Adams and sculptor Rudolf Schwarz. From 1918 to 1929, Richards was a teacher at Herron, heading the anatomy and sculpture department.

Pioneer Family Fountain in the Fountain Square neighborhood, ca. 1970
Credit: City of Indianapolis, Department of Metropolitan Development, Indiana Historical Society

During her lifetime, Richards’ bronze work was widely exhibited in such shows as the Hoosier Salon in Indianapolis, A Century of Progress (Chicago), and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. In Indiana, permanent installations of her work include a statue of James Whitcomb Riley at Court House Square in Greenfield; fountain figures in University Park and Fountain Square in Indianapolis; and a group of figures representing the advancement of women in Turkey Run State Park.

Richards also executed bronze busts of such notable individuals as Russian pianist Jan Cherniavsky, writer Meredith Nicholson, attorney John S. Duncan, Indianapolis News founder John H. Holliday, and judge Napoleon Taylor.

In 1929, Richards left her teaching post at the John Herron Art Institute and traveled to Paris to continue her study of sculpture under G. J. Zolnay. In 1933, she returned to the United States, opening a studio in New York City before her death a year later.

Revised February 2021

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