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Artist on Museum Staff

Carlton W. Angell
The Michigan Alumnus 67

 on display in Museums Building

GO UP to the fourth floor of the Museums Building—preferably using the elevator—turn down 
the corridor to the right, past rooms full of 
gorgeous Chinese wood work and textiles, and you will
 run into an area which bears unmistakable signs of being 
inhabited by an artist. All around are plaster casts on 
tall pedestals and if you turn left, toward the end of 
the corridor, you find yourself actually in a sculptor's 
studio. It belongs to Carleton W. Angell, who, after 
several years of instructing architectural students to
 draw and model, in 1926 joined the staff of the Museum
 of Zoology as artist. 

An Artist on a Museum Staff

You may wonder what an artist is doing in a Museum
 of Zoology. It is quite natural after all. Professor Case
 goes into the wilds of Texas in the summer time and 
brings back, let us say, the skull of a phytosaur, which 
he prepares and sets up in the exhibition hall. But it is 
rather hard, just from a skull, for an ordinary person to
 figure what sort of a beast a phytosaur was—the last 
live one died several geological epochs ago. So Professor 
Case tells Mr. Angell what the beast probably looked 
like and Mr. Angell makes a model that can be displayed 
along with the skull. Or again, instead of displaying a
 stuffed moose eight feet high, where the delighted moths 
will set up housekeeping, Director Gaige may prefer a 
faithfully modeled little statuette, like the one illus
trated; or instead of either a live rattlesnake, or a dead
 one pickled in alcohol, he may find Mr. Angell's modeled 
snake among his native rocks and in his original colors, 
a much better way to exhibit this reptile to University
 classes and the general public. In other words, it's all
 a part of Visual Education, and all the good museums 
are doing it.

Carleton W. Angell's Work

Mr. Angell is a native of Belding, Michigan, and a 
graduate of the Chicago Art Institute. He did those 
relief heads of Sager, Winchell, and other scientists that 
form part of the outside decorations of the Museums 
building, and a number of fine portrait busts, including 
those of Drs. W. B. Hinsdale and C. G. Darling, which
 can be seen at his studio. A recent work shows Professor 
Hobbs and his dog, the late Sandy. Professor Hobbs was
 much more concerned, so Mr. Angell says, about Sandy's
 figure than his own.