Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

The Freedman

Artist:
John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York)
Date:
1863, cast 1891
Medium:
Bronze
Dimensions:
19 1/2 x 14 3/4 x 9 3/4 in. (49.5 x 37.5 x 24.8 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Gift of Charles Anthony Lamb and Barea Lamb Seeley, in memory of their grandfather, Charles Rollinson Lamb, 1979
Accession Number:
1979.394
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 762
Ward’s depiction of a seminude African-American man was inspired by President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, issued on September 22, 1862. Contemporary appreciation for “The Freedman” arose from the desire for statuary that addressed current issues in straightforward terms rather than through allegories. The muscular figure was executed with remarkable attention to anatomical accuracy. The broken manacles on the former enslaved man’s left wrist and in his right hand offer a succinct commentary on the chief political and moral topic of the era and clearly proclaim Ward’s abolitionist sentiments.
Related Objects

Inside Front Cover (from Sketchbook)

Artist: John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York) Date: ca. 1860 Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 1985.351 verso On view in:Not on view

Classical Female Figure; Satyr and Dog (from Sketchbook)

Artist: John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York) Date: ca. 1860 Medium: Pen and brown (possibly iron-gall) ink on smooth off-white wove paper Accession: 1985.351.9 recto On view in:Not on view

Study of Cupid (from Sketchbook)

Artist: John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York) Date: ca. 1860 Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 1985.351.8 recto On view in:Not on view

Study for a Bust Portrait of a Young Man (from Sketchbook)

Artist: John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York) Date: ca. 1860 Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 1985.351.2 verso On view in:Not on view

Standing Male Figure (Jesus Christ?) (from Sketchbook)

Artist: John Quincy Adams Ward (American, Urbana, Ohio 1830–1910 New York) Date: ca. 1860 Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 1985.351.1 recto On view in:Not on view