Randolph Rogers (American, Waterloo, New York 1825–1892 Rome)
1879–80, cast 1880
44 x 34 1/2 x 16 in. (111.8 x 87.6 x 40.6 cm)
Bequest of Henry H. Cook, 1905
Not on view
The "Last Arrow" was created in Rome, where expatriate American sculptors were drawn by the ready availability of statuary marble and access to skilled craftsmen. Most of Rogers’s sculptures were marble, but he occasionally worked in bronze. "The Last Arrow" is a hybrid of sorts: a Neoclassical approach to form is exemplified by the lower figure, whose pose is reminiscent of that of the "Dying Gaul" (Roman copy after Greek original, ca. 230–220 b.c.), yet Rogers’s cosmopolitan patrons could easily identify the subject as American. "The Last Arrow" offers a twist on the American Indian combat subject—here the arrow-induced gash on the chest of the fallen warrior suggests that it was the result of intertribal warfare. The Indian on horseback, positioned to release his final arrow, is a metaphor for bravery and resistance, regardless of foe.
Signature: [left side of base]: [cursive] Randolph Rogers• / Rome
Marking: [foundry mark, top of base, rear]: A • cav • Nelli fuse. Roma 1880.
Henry H. Cook, New York, until d. 1905 Leonard Wells Volk