Rejoice Oh Young Man in Thy Youth

  • R. Tait McKenzie, Rejoice Oh Young Man in Thy Youth, 1936, bronze, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the heirs of Albert Laessle: Mrs. Albertine de Bempt Laessle, Mr. Albert M. Laessle and Mr. Paul Laessle, 1972.167.18

Robert McKenzie’s medal design reflects the artist’s experience as a gymnast and physical trainer as well as his enthusiasm for the wholesome life he portrayed in many of his sculptures. On the obverse, a classical nude appears as a shot-putter, while on the reverse a line of youths in a footrace appear as natural in their element as the birds in the sky and the greyhound that keeps pace with the men. In the 1930s, images of healthy, virile men compensated for the vulnerability sensed by many Americans facing the Depression and years of drought. Research is inconclusive, but McKenzie’s medal may also be related to the 1936 Olympics.

Title
Rejoice Oh Young Man in Thy Youth
Artist
Commissioner
Founder
Date
1936
Location
Not on view
Dimensions
2 78 in. (7.3 cm) diam.
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of the heirs of Albert Laessle: Mrs. Albertine de Bempt Laessle, Mr. Albert M. Laessle and Mr. Paul Laessle

Mediums
Mediums Description
bronze
Classifications
Keywords
  • Animal – dog
  • Figure male – nude
  • Figure group – male – nude
  • Figure male – full length
  • Animal – bird – swan
Object Number
1972.167.18
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI