Harry Bertoia sculpture

RIT Art Collection

Table of Contents

Collection Overview
Biographical Information for Harry Bertoia
Scope and Content
Subject Headings
Information for Researchers
Administrative Information
Related Materials

Collection Overview (Collapse)

Harry Bertoia sculpture
Bertoia, Harry
Harry Bertoia sculpture contains a set of 7 dandelions, 3 planters, and 1 wall sculpture. Bertoia's dandelions were part of the Eastman Kodak pavilion at the 1964 New York World's Fair.
11.0 Item(s)
Dimensions note
Sculptures vary in size: 4 x 4.5 to 10 x 6 feet.
Building 7A, Bevier Gallery
Building 70, Lobby
Building 77, Lobby
RIT Archive Collections
RIT Libraries
Wallace Center
90 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, New York, 14623
(585) 475-2557

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Biographical Information for Harry Bertoia (Collapse)

Born in Italy in 1915, Bertoia came to America to study at the age of 15. He was educated at the famous Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan. He was best known for his sculpture, but also designed furniture and jewelry. Bertoia’s hand-crafted surfaces combine an interest in modern, mass-produced industrial materials and a sensitivity to color. One of his most popular works are the dandelion sculptures, originally designed for Kodak’s Pavilion at the New York World's Fair in 1964, and are now part of this collection.

Harry Bertoia died in 1978.

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Scope and Content (Collapse)

Harry Bertoia sculpture includes a series of 7 dandelions, sunburst wall sculpture, and 3 bronze planters. The dandelions were originally made for the Kodak pavilion at the 1964 New York World's Fair, displayed around a spraying fountain. The smallest, on display in the Bausch and Lomb building, is 6.5 feet tall and the largest, 10 feet tall with a 6 foot globe. These bronze and gilded wire sculptures, as well as a sunburst wall sculpture on dispaly in the Booth building accross from the Bevier Gallery, were given to RIT by the Eastman Kodak Company.

The set of 3 bronze planters were commissioned for the new RIT campus constructed in 1968. When RIT moved from downtown Rochester to its current location in Henrietta, one percent of all construction costs were set aside for the purchase of fine art for the new campus. A committee composed of RIT Trustee Arthur L. Stern, his wife Molly, and Mrs. Vanderbilt Webb, founder of the School for American Crafts, selected the works to be purchased. Among them were a pair of murals by Josef Albers, Henry Moore bronze sculpture, Jose de Riviera granite and steel sculpture, sundial by Alastair Bevington, and a set of three bronze planters by Harry Bertoia. Initially, the planters were displayed in the Student Alumni Union. They are now on display in the atrium of the Golisano Building.

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Arrangement (Collapse)

Collection consists of 11 items.

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Subject Headings (Collapse)

Personal Name(s)

  • Bertoia, Harry

Corporate Name(s)

  • Rochester Institute of Technology -- Art collections.


  • Art in universities and colleges -- New York (State) -- Rochester
  • Public Art -- New York (State) -- Rochester
  • Public sculpture -- New York (State) -- Rochester
  • Sculptors

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Information for Researchers (Collapse)

Preferred Citation

Harry Bertoia sculpture, RIT Art Collection

Restrictions on Access

This collection is open to researchers.

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Administrative Information (Collapse)

Collection ID


Source of Acquisition

Set of 7 dandelions and burst sculpture were gifted to RIT by the Eastman Kodak Company in 1975. The set of 3 bronze planters was commissioned by RIT in 1968.

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Amy Vilz in September 2011.

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Related Materials (Collapse)

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Bibliography (Collapse)

Harry Bertoia at Art on Campus, Rochester Institute of Technology

Additional description and images of artist work in View It! The Art and Architecture of RIT. By David Pankow, Becky Simmons, Houghton Wetherald. Rochester, NY: Cary Graphic Arts Press, 2004.

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