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Henry Kirke Brown
La Grazia
modeled about 1844, cast about 1850
18 7/8 x 9 3/4 x 10 1/4 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Henry Kirke Bush-Brown

The artist's model, Maria Grazia, led a colorful life. As the wife of a bandit who plied the countryside between Rome and Naples, she was imprisoned for a time in Rome. After her release, she made her fortune posing in the city's painting and sculpture studios. This piece, cast in Henry Kirke Brown's foundry in Brooklyn around 1850, is one of the earliest examples of American fine-arts bronze casting.