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Kate Fox, Medal

1947 Anthony de Francisci Born: Palermo, Italy 1887 Died: New York, New York 1964 gilded white metal 4 1/2 in. (11.5 cm) diam. Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Mrs. Gilda Slate 1966.110.53 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 46A, Drawer 8


Luce Center Label

Catherine “Kate” Fox (1836-1892) was one of the founders of spiritualism, a movement that swept America and Europe in the nineteenth century. When Kate was young, she and her sister Margaret claimed to have heard rapping noises in their Arcadia, New York, home. By the 1850s, spiritualist adherents on both sides of the Atlantic, including the famous newspaper editor Horace Greeley, were touting their communications with the deceased. Anthony de Francisci’s medal portrays Kate’s worn features as they may have appeared when the spiritualist fad was dying away. The movement lost credibility in the late 1880s when Kate’s alcoholism overtook her and Margaret confessed that their childhood experience had been a hoax played on their gullible mother.

Keywords

Portrait female - Fox, Kate - bust

Portrait female - Fox, Kate - elderly

sculpture - medal

metal

gilded

relief

About Anthony de Francisci

Born: Palermo, Italy 1887 Died: New York, New York 1964

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Anthony de Francisci