The Infant Nero

Copied Hiram Powers, The Infant Nero, modeled 1843, plaster, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Museum purchase in memory of Ralph Cross Johnson, 1968.155.92
Free to use

Artwork Details

Title
The Infant Nero
Artist
Date
modeled 1843
Dimensions
19 3412 148 18 in. (50.231.020.7 cm)
Credit Line
Museum purchase in memory of Ralph Cross Johnson
Mediums
Mediums Description
plaster
Classifications
Keywords
  • Study — sculpture model
  • Portrait male — Nero — bust
  • Portrait male — Nero — child
  • Dress — historic — classical dress
Object Number
1968.155.92

Artwork Description

This portrait was commissioned as a “copy of the infant Nero” by an Englishman named C. Noel Welman. In contrast to many of his ideal sculptures, Hiram Powers modeled this piece to resemble the realistic style of Roman portraiture. Welman asked for a bust with no drapery, but evidently Powers ignored this request and the young child is shown with a Greek himation, or cloak, covering his shoulders.