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Moses Wainer Dykaar

Also Known as: M. Wainer Dykaar, Moses W. Dykaar, Moses Dykaar, Moses A. Wainer Dykaar, Moses Weiner Dykaar, Morris W. Dykaar

Vilna, Russia 1884

New York, New York 1933

Luce Artist Quote

"I wanted to be a sculptor more than anything else in the world.  If I could not be a sculptor, I did not care if I would die." Artist quoted in Nathaniel Zalowitz, "Dykaar, The Sculptor and His Striking Work," January 31, 1926, American Art curatorial file.

Luce Artist Biography

Moses Wainer Dykaar was born in Russia and began carving on his own while in seminary, eventually giving up rabbinical training to become an artist. Although he was offered a government subsidy to study art in Paris, he refused, preferring to make his own way. When he came to America at age thirty, his talent at realistic sculpting earned him a number of important commissions to create portraits of historical figures. His sitters included President Calvin Coolidge, secretary of the Smithsonian Charles D. Walcott, Supreme Court justice Wendell Phillips Stafford, Dr. Alexander Graham Bell, and socialist leader Eugene V. Debs. Although he had become a successful and noted American sculptor, Dykaar leapt under a train at age forty-nine, just days after seeking psychological help for a "nervous ailment" that was worsened by financial problems.