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Paul Marchand

Paul Marchand

(1902-1996)
American
Born: New Britain, Connecticut, U.S.

Paul Marchand, son of French-American artists Henri and Clothilde Marchand, was internationally admired for his exquisitely detailed dioramas and other museum displays. Born in New Britain, Connecticut in 1904, he began working on zoological and botanical exhibits with his father in New York City at the age of 14. The family moved to Buffalo, N.Y., in 1925, and Henri, Paul, and Paul’s brother George all took positions at the Buffalo Science Museum, which was in the process of preparing a new space that opened to the public in 1929. Paul Marchand held the position of coordinator of exhibits for the museum until 1943 before moving on to other institutions including the Smithsonian, several National Parks museums, and the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences. He returned to the Science Museum on many occasions in the 1960s until his death. He maintained a studio in Orchard Park, N.Y. until he was 90. [1]

In a catalog essay on Marchand, Donald K. Crowdis wrote, “Many of his most remarkable procedures are not apparent to the viewer who can only appreciate the results and wonder how he did it. Flexible molds and casts, metal molds, expanded molds, electroplating, latex, celluloid, vinyls, silicones, Fiberglas and epoxy, supports, fillers, stabilizing natural materials, sprays, varieties of paints and solvents, transformers, centrifuges, lights of every sort, motion, and more, all have their places, but it is the unusual mind of Paul Marchand which is the secret of his long series of successes. He is an original author in his media.” [2]

For more information about the Marchand brothers, see Mark Sommer, “Dioramas and the Buffalo Connection,” The Buffalo News, 03/31/2009, http://www.buffalonews.com/article/20090331/LIFE/303319949. (Accessed 04/08/2014)

 

[1] Dale Anderson, “Paul Marchand Dies; Artist Created Nature Exhibits for Museum of Science, Buffalo News, 02/08/1996, http://www.buffalonews.com/article/19960208/CITYANDREGION/302089929. (Accessed 04/03/2014)

[2] Donald K. Crowdis, “Paul Marchand” in The Art and Science of Paul Marchand. (Buffalo, N.Y.: Partners Press, 1992), p. 3.