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Left Foot

n.d. Hiram Powers Born: Woodstock, Vermont 1805 Died: Florence, Italy 1873 plaster 9 3/4 x 3 3/4 x 5 1/2 in. (24.8 x 9.5 x 14.0 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Museum purchase in memory of Ralph Cross Johnson 1968.155.130 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, 17B

Luce Center Label

There are many plaster fragments of anatomical details in the Hiram Powers collection that cannot be identified. These may have been models for the hands and feet of full-size sculptures, such as Left Hand Clutching Scroll, which was a study for the Thomas Jefferson statue that stands in the U.S. Capitol, and Left Hand Pressing Down, which was for the statue Greek Slave. Many pieces were also likely commissioned as individual works. The popularity of Loulie’s Hand, a sculpture based on Powers’s daughter’s hand, may have influenced visitors to request casts of their own children’s and loved one’s hands.


Figure - fragment - foot

Study - anatomical study

Study - sculpture model