Born: Warsaw, Poland 1882
Died: New York, New York 1946
bronze on marble base 31 5/8 x 13 7/8 x 11 7/8 in. (80.4 x 35.3 x 30.2 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Countess Helen Naselli in memory of Harry Wardman
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, W310
Luce Center Label
This sculpture, titled Dancing Figure, was also titled Artemis, representing the Greek goddess of the hunt and the dawn. Elie Nadelman’s irreverent depiction of this deity as a common dancer shows how he tried to combine the look and themes of classical sculpture with American popular culture. For example, the sculptor combined ancient Greek motifs, such as the dancer’s wavy hair and almost masklike face with a modern pleated dress and theatrical pose. Nadelman shared the belief of mathematicians and physicists that waves were the most beautiful shapes, so he created Dancing Figure entirely out of curves, including the repeating flutes of her dress, the bands around her head and ankles, and her small fingers and feet.
Figure female - full length
Performing arts - dance
metal - bronze
stone - marble
About Elie Nadelman
Born: Warsaw, Poland 1882 Died: New York, New York 1946
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