Skip to main content

Sylvia Shaw Judson papers, 1911-1975

Biographical Note

Sylvia Shaw Judson (1897-1978) was a sculptor and writer active in Chicago, Illinois. Her work Bird Girl received popular attention after her death.
Sylvia Shaw Judson, who went by Sylvia Haskins in her personal life, was the daughter of prominent architect Howard Van Doren Shaw and Frances Shaw. She studied with Albin Polasek at the Art Institute of Chicago and went to Paris in 1920 to continue her studies under Antoine Bourdelle at the Academy Grande Chaumiere.
Judson's sculpture often depicts children and animals. Notable works include Little Gardener which was included in Rachel "Bunny" Mellon's design for the White House Rose Garden, and Bird Girl in Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, Georgia.
As an adult, Judson joined the Society of Friends and became an active participant in the church. She died in 1978 in Lake Forest, Illinois.