Life Mask (Abraham Lincoln)
Born: Glen Ridge, New Jersey 1916
Died: Georgetown, Connecticut 2001
oil on board 19 × 16 in. (48.3 × 40.6 cm)
Smithsonian American Art Museum Museum purchase made possible by David S. Purvis
Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 38B
Luce Center Label
Life Mask (Abraham Lincoln) shows two well-known sculptures—Leonard Volk's 1860 life mask of Abraham Lincoln and Nike of Samothrace, the classical sculpture of the winged goddess of victory. Life Mask (Abraham Lincoln) is open to many interpretations. The classical statue, silhouetted in the foreground, may symbolize Lincoln's victory during the Civil War, but the muted colors and deep shadows suggest a more somber meaning. Roberts leaves the viewer wondering if this painting celebrates Lincoln's legacy, represents his mortality, or suggests that victory was overshadowed by his death.
- This object is featured in the Luce Center's Mix Tape.
Portrait male - Lincoln, Abraham - head
paint - oil