Olin Levi Warner (American, West Suffield, Connecticut 1844–1896 New York)
Diam. 7 1/2 in. (19.1 cm)
Bequest of Isabel D. Coe, 1973
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
William Bewley Duncan probably knew Warner through their mutual association with the art dealer and decorator Daniel Cottier, since Duncan was an illustrator for Cottier and Company. This medallion contains the essential elements of Warner’s mature portrait-relief style: circular shape, distinct outlining of form, strong modeling, and freely rendered inscription. Warner seldom strayed from the circular relief format, in part a result of his admiration for the portrait medallions of the early-nineteenth-century French sculptor David d’Angers. Within the round field, Duncan is posed facing right, the head sharply truncated at the neck, its underside in deep shadow. The resulting sense of high relief is emphasized in the heavy undercutting at the top of the head.
Signature: [right]: [cursive] O. L. Warner / New York 1879
Inscription: [right]: [cursive] To / my friend' / W.B. Duncan
William Bewley Duncan; his daughter Isabel Duncan Coe, d. 1973