Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Mutual Surprise

Edwin Willard Deming (American, Ashland, Ohio 1860–1942 New York)
9 1/2 x 3 1/4 x 8 in. (24.1 x 8.3 x 20.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1908
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
An illustrator, painter, and sculptor, Deming specialized in the depiction of North American Indians and the wild animals of the American West. Bears were a favorite subject and he modeled them in pursuits both violent and amusing. The sculptor invested humor in an unexpected encounter between two creatures by emphasizing the contrasting sizes of a bear cub and a snapping turtle. This light moment is enhanced by the questioning pose of the open-mouthed turtle and the grinning visage and looming stance of the gawky bear. Statuettes depicting the gentler side of nature were produced by other contemporaneous animal sculptors such as Eli Harvey, Edward Kemeys, and Alexander Phimister Proctor.
Signature: [left side of base]: Copyricht [sic] 1907 BY E W DEMING

Marking: [foundry mark, back of base]: [cursive] Roman Bronze Works N Y; CAST NUMBER [underside of base, stamped] No 5.
the artist, until 1908
Related Objects

The Fight

Artist: Edwin Willard Deming (American, Ashland, Ohio 1860–1942 New York) Date: ca. 1906 Medium: Bronze Accession: 07.42 On view in:Gallery 774

The Mountain Man

Artist: Frederic Remington (American, Canton, New York 1861–1909 Ridgefield, Connecticut) Date: 1903, cast by March 1907 Medium: Bronze Accession: 07.79 On view in:Gallery 773

Boy and Duck

Artist: Frederick William MacMonnies (American, New York 1863–1937 New York) Date: 1895–96, cast 1901 Medium: Bronze Accession: 22.61 On view in:Gallery 700

Stalking Panther

Artist: Alexander Phimister Proctor (American, Bosanquet, Ontario 1860–1950 Palo Alto, California) Date: 1891–92, revised mid 1890s, this cast ca. 1902 Medium: Bronze Accession: 1996.561 On view in:Gallery 774