Gaston Lachaise (American (born France) 1882–1935)
1912–15; cast 1930
73 7/8 x 32 x 17 3/4 in. (187.6 x 81.3 x 45.1 cm)
Bequest of Scofield Thayer, 1982
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 913
Lachaise was working in Paris in 1903 when he met his lifelong muse Isabel Dutaud Nagle, whom he later married in 1917. Responding to Nagle’s voluptuous figure, the sculptor created a powerful archetype of womanhood; Standing Woman is almost a modern fertility goddess. Swelling and undulating with elegant strength, she perches delicately on her tiptoes, seeming nearly to levitate despite her evident weight. Her closed eyes enhance her detachment from the realm of the viewer, whom the sculptor invites to marvel at her extraordinary body.
the artist, New York (1930–d. 1935); Scofield Thayer, New York (by 1946–d. 1982; on extended loan to the Worcester Art Museum, Worcester, Mass. as part of the Dial Collection, 1946–82; his bequest to MMA)
New Haven. Yale University Art Gallery. "Sculpture Since Rodin," January 14–February 13, 1949, no. 13.
Worcester Art Museum. "The Dial and the Dial Collection," April 30–September 8, 1959, no. 35.
Worcester Art Museum. "The Dial Revisited," June 29–August 22, 1971, no catalogue (checklist).
Worcester Art Museum. "'The Dial': Arts and Letters in the 1920s," March 7–May 10, 1981, no. 66.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Selection One," February 1–April 28, 1985, no catalogue.
Canberra. Australian National Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," March 1–April 27, 1986, unnumbered cat. (p. 70).
Brisbane. Queensland Art Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," May 7–July 1, 1986, unnumbered cat.
Michael Brenson. "Met Museum Given Major Private Collection." New York Times (August 25, 1982), p. C18.
Kathleen Howard, ed. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. 2nd ed. (1st ed., 1983). New York, 1994, p. 455, no. 42, ill. (color).
Joan M. Marter inAmerican Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Ed. Thayer Tolles. Vol. 2, A Catalogue of Works by Artists Born between 1865 and 1885. New York and New Haven, 2001, pp. 665–67, no. 307, ill.
Virginia Budny. "Gaston Lachaise's American Venus: The Genesis and Evolution of 'Elevation'." American Art Journal 34/35 (2003/ 2004), pp. 62–143, fig. 1 (not this cast); MMA cast, pp. 127–28, 143 n. 163, notes that in November 1923, Scofield Thayer purchased the option to have the plaster version of this sculpture cast in bronze, which he ordered in October 1924; further states that the cast intended for Thayer was made in 1927 but given by Lachaise to his wife (now owned by the Art Institute of Chicago); clarifies that the MMA version is the third cast, made in 1930 for Erhard Weyhe but not delivered.
Lisa Mintz Messinger inAbstract Expressionism and Other Modern Works: The Muriel Kallis Steinberg Newman Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Ed. Gary Tinterow, Lisa Mintz Messinger, and Nan Rosenthal. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2007, pp. 37–38, 40 n. 3, fig. 15 (color).
The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. New York, 2012, p. 404, ill. (color).