Image BZ5464 (Casts from WWI Soldiers’ Mutilated Faces) These are casts made from the soldiers’ mutilated faces; the lower row shows the faces which Mrs. Ladd modeled on the foundation of the life mask with help of photographs taken before the wound was received. On the table are some of the final masks made to fit over the disfigured part of the face. Anna Coleman Watts Ladd was an American sculptor. In late 1917 she travelled to Paris and founded the American Red Cross “Studio for Portrait-Masks” to provide cosmetic masks to be worn by men who had been badly disfigured in World War I. Soldiers would come to Ladd’s studio to have a cast made of their face and their features sculpted onto clay or plasticine. This form was then used to construct the prosthetic piece from extremely thin galvanized copper. The metal was painted to resemble the recipient’s skin. Her services earned her the Légion d’Honneur Crois de Chevalier and the Serbian Order of Saint Sava. In 1936, Ladd retired with her husband to California, where she died in 1939 at the age of 60.
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