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Article

Frederick N. Bohrer

Style of the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th, inspired by Assyrian artefacts of the 9th to 7th centuries bc. These were first brought to public attention through the excavations by Paul-Emile Botta (1802–70) at Khorsabad and Austen Henry Layard at Nimrud in the 1840s. By 1847 both the Louvre in Paris and the British Museum in London had begun to display these objects, the size and popularity of which were such that the Louvre created a separate Musée des Antiquités Orientales, while the British Museum opened its separate Nineveh Gallery in 1853. The same popularity, fuelled by Layard’s best-selling Nineveh and its Remains (London, 1849) and Botta’s elaborate Monument de Ninive (Paris, 1849–50), led to further explorations elsewhere in Mesopotamia.

Assyrian revivalism first appeared in England rather than France, which was then in political turmoil. The earliest forms of emulation can be found in the decorative arts, such as the ‘Assyrian style’ jewellery that was produced in England from as early as ...

Article

Philip Attwood

(b Schavli, Kovno [now Kaunas], June 12, 1871; d New York, April 5, 1924).

American medallist of Lithuanian origin. He trained as a seal-engraver under his father and worked as a jewellery engraver and type cutter. In 1890 he went to New York, where he worked as a die engraver of badges, and in 1898 to Paris to study at the Académie Julian and later with Oscar Roty. He first exhibited medals in the early years of the 20th century. The influence of Roty is apparent in the low relief and soft-edged naturalism and also in the inclusion of flat expanses of metal in his designs. He occasionally ventured into sculpture, as in the Schenley Memorial Fountain (bronze; Pittsburgh, PA, Schenley Park), but he was best known for his medals and plaquettes, both struck and cast, and his sensitive portraits assured his popularity. The powerful head of President Roosevelt on the Panama Canal medal (bronze, 1908) and the tender Shepherdess plaquette (electrotype, 1907...

Article

Philip Ward-Jackson

(b Paris, March 6, 1829; d Paris, Nov 12, 1896).

French sculptor and writer. Born in humble circumstances, he was apprenticed to a jeweller at the age of 11. He subsequently trained with the painter Abel de Pujol (1785–1861) but seems to have taught himself the techniques of sculpture, and at the 1848 Salon he exhibited a plaster sketch of Khair-ed-Din, called Barbarossa (untraced). In 1851, on the advice of his patron, the Comte de Nieuwekerke, he became François Rude’s last pupil. In 1853 he exhibited a plaster group of Queen Hortense and her Son Louis Napoleon (untraced; ex-Bagnères-de-Bigorre, Mus. A.), which brought him a commission from Louis Napoleon, by then Napoleon III, for a marble of the same group (Compiègne, Château); this was exhibited in 1855 at the Exposition Universelle, Paris. During the remaining years of the Second Empire, Chatrousse executed a number of sculptures to decorate public buildings in Paris, such as the Louvre, the Tuileries, the Hôtel de Ville and numerous churches. He exhibited works with religious and historical subjects: some of these, such as ...

Article

(b Venarcy, Côte-d’Or, Jan 2, 1854; d Dijon, Sept 26, 1945).

French sculptor, jeweller and furniture designer. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Dijon and then, in 1874, under François Jouffroy and Paul Dubois (ii) at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He first exhibited at the Salon de la Société des Artistes Français in 1876 with his bust of an architect called Belot (Dijon, Mus. B.-A.) and in 1877 he came second in the Prix de Rome. In 1879 he was awarded a second-class medal for his plaster sculpture Ismael (Châlons-sur-Marne, Mus. Mun.) and in 1881 he won a first-class medal for the marble St John the Baptist (Paris, Mus. d’Orsay). He travelled in Italy from 1882 to 1883 and later visited Spain and Morocco on a travel scholarship. In 1889 he ceased exhibiting at the Salon de la Société des Artistes Français and instead exhibited at the recently established Salon de la Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts. He worked primarily in bronze but also in ivory, silver and gold, and produced some jewellery. His sculptures were mainly inspired by religious and mythological subjects executed in a highly finished academic style (e.g. ...

Article

Josephine Withers

[Juli]

(b Barcelona, Sept 21, 1876; d Arceuil, March 27, 1942).

Spanish sculptor, metalworker, draughtsman and jeweller. As a sculptor he pioneered a technique of working directly with metal in the 1930s and is particularly known for his abstract forged and welded open-form constructions in iron, bronze and silver (see Head, c. 1935.)Although he incorporated both Surrealist and Constructivist elements in his work, González was independent of any movement. He made a significant contribution to the ‘truth to materials’ discourse of his time and was an important example for David Smith as well as Anthony Caro, Eduardo Chillida and other sculptors working with welded metal after World War II.

González and his brother Joan (1868–1908) received their initial sculptural training from their father Concordio González (1832–96), a sculptor and metalworker. In 1892 the brothers attended evening classes in drawing at the School of Fine Arts in Barcelona but it was in 1897, after frequenting Els Quatre Gats (the meeting-place for the most progressive artists in Barcelona), that Julio considered becoming a painter. In ...

Article

Lucia Pirzio Biroli Stefanelli

[Niccolò]

(b Rome, Sep 12, 1771; d Rome, Feb 1838).

Italian gem-engraver. He was a member of the Congregazione dei Virtuosi del Pantheon and the Accademia di S Luca (1812). He was renowned for his cameo portraits, preferring the technique to that of intaglio. Particularly noteworthy are the portrait of Francis I, Emperor of Austria (Vienna, Ksthist. Mus.) and the numerous works commissioned by the Bonaparte family. These include a cameo portrait of Marie-Letizia, a cameo with facing portraits of Lucien Bonaparte’s two wives, Cristine Boyer (1773–1800) and Alexandrine Blechamps (1778–1855), another cameo portrait of Alexandrine Blechamps (all Rome, Mus. Napoleonico) and two portrait cameos of Napoleon (Rome, Villa Giulia; ex-Liverpool Mus.), the latter example given by Napoleon and Empress Marie Louise to Marshal Ney and his wife. (For an illustration of another cameo portrait by Morelli of Napoleon.) Morelli created (1807) a well-known parure that was given by Cardinal Joseph Fesch to his half-sister ...

Article

Philip Ward-Jackson

[Jean-Jacques]

(b Geneva, May 23, 1790; d Bougival, June 4, 1852).

Swiss sculptor, painter and composer. Prompted by his early displays of artistic talent, Pradier’s parents placed him in the workshop of a jeweller, where he learnt engraving on metal. He attended drawing classes in Geneva, before leaving for Paris in 1807. By 1811 he was registered at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and subsequently entered its sculpture competitions as a pupil of François-Frédéric, Baron Lemot. A more significant contribution to his artistic formation around this time was the guidance of the painter François Gérard. Pradier won the Prix de Rome in 1813 and was resident at the French Academy in Rome, from 1814 until 1819. On his return to France, he showed at the Salon of 1819 a group Centaur and Bacchante (untraced) and a reclining Bacchante (marble; Rouen, Mus. B.-A.). The latter, borrowing an erotically significant torsion from the Antique Callipygean Venus, opens the series of sensuous Classical female subjects that were to become Pradier’s forte. In ...

Article

Valerio Terraroli

(b Ligornetto, Ticino, May 3, 1820; d Mendrisio, Ticino, Oct 3, 1891).

Swiss sculptor. He worked first in Besazio and Viggiù as an apprentice doing rough carving, then in Milan at the cathedral workshops as a stone-dresser. While in Milan he attended the Accademia di Brera and also worked in the studio of Benedetto Cacciatori (1794–1871). Like many of his generation of sculptors, Vela was early on in his career profoundly impressed by the works of Lorenzo Bartolini, especially the Trust in God (marble, 1836; Milan, Mus. Poldi Pezzoli). The influence of this statue of a kneeling, nude girl is evident in Vela’s Morning Prayer (Milan, priv. col.). This work, commissioned in 1846 by Conte Giulio Litta, is a clear tribute to the purist tendency of Milanese sculpture during the 1840s.

In 1847 Vela went to Rome, where he associated with Adamo Tadolini, Pietro Tenerani and Giovanni Dupré. The naturalism prevalent in this circle induced him to address new themes with a new plastic vigour, as in his statue of ...

Article

Julie Aronson

[ née Potter, Bessie Onahotema ]

(b St. Louis, MO, Aug 17, 1872; d New York, March 8, 1955).

American sculptor. Vonnoh was known for small, distinctive compositions of women and children in dress of the period. Created in an impressionistic style, her sculptures capture the essence of her subjects. Born Bessie Onahotema Potter, she grew up in Chicago. In 1886, she entered the studio of the sculptor Lorado Taft and enrolled at the Art Institute of Chicago, where he served as instructor of modeling. Newly arrived from the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, Taft taught Vonnoh the latest French techniques and stylistic tendencies, including a fluid approach to form and the retention of the evidence of her touch. After she graduated in 1891, her education advanced with the World’s Columbian Exposition (1893), where she exhibited her work and gained practical experience as one of the “White Rabbits;” a group of women who assisted Taft with the enlargement of sculptors’ models.

In 1894, a circle of artists and writers calling themselves “The Little Room” convened in Vonnoh’s Chicago studio. Discussions ensued on the merits of American subject matter and Impressionism, a movement in painting that used active brushwork to engage with contemporary life. Seeking a three-dimensional equivalent to Impressionism, Vonnoh modeled statuettes of women in the dress of the day with lively surfaces, cast them in plaster and delicately tinted them with color. Some she assigned titles such as ...

Article

G. Lola Worthington

(b Arizona, 1950).

American jeweler, sculptor, painter, and silversmith, of Mescalero Apache–Navajo descent. White Eagle began his career as a silversmith under the tutelage of legendary Navajo artisan Fred Peshlakai , at age five, learning by observation and developing an artistic understanding of Peshlakai’s aesthetic approach. At nine, he began making and selling his own jewelry at Union Square in Los Angeles. Later moving to Palm Springs, CA he continued to generate and sell his jewelry on the street under the date palms trees.

Always handmade, his jewelry pieces used the finest available quality of semi-precious stones. Singular details and features demonstrated his exclusive and unique artistic vision and styling. In 1973, the Yacqui artist, Art Tafoya, began a silversmith apprenticeship with White Eagle, studying the hand-stamped old style embossing skills of jewelry; he continued the historic creation of extraordinary designs.

Bold and substantial, White Eagle’s jewelry balanced a focal fluid turquoise stone against deeply carved flora and linear design lines. His pieces represented transcultural combinations of traditional Navajo silver interwoven with mainstream expectations of Native American style. He daringly counterbalanced mixed semi-precious stonework with irregular fusions of silver positive space. Smooth, amazingly detailed stamp work combined with bent offset features providing an overall asymmetrical daring quality....

Article

Richard Kerremans

(b Brussels, April 16, 1858; d Brussels, Dec 13, 1929).

Belgian jeweller, designer and sculptor . The son of the master goldsmith Louis Wolfers (1820–92), he graduated from the Académie des Beaux-Arts in Brussels in 1875 and entered his father’s workshop as an apprentice, where he acquired a comprehensive technical training. Influenced by the Rococo Revival and Japanese art, in the 1880s he created sensitively curved pieces in gold and silver decorated with asymmetrically distributed floral motifs, which heralded the Art Nouveau style (e.g. ewer, Le Maraudeur, c. 1880; Brussels, Musées Royaux A. & Hist.). After 1890 he produced two kinds of work: goldsmithing and jewellery designs for production by Wolfers Frères and one-off pieces that were produced to his own designs in the workshop that he had established c. 1890–92. Typical of the latter are Art Nouveau goldsmiths’ work and jewellery (e.g. orchid hair ornament, 1902; London, V&A), crystal vases carved into cameos and ivory pieces. Ivory was then in plentiful supply from the Congo, and from ...