Chester Beach (American, San Francisco, California 1881–1956 Brewster, New York)
26 1/4 x 10 x 9 in. (66.7 x 25.4 x 22.9 cm)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. George W. Davison, 1943
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
Dawn (Eos in Greek mythology, Aurora in Roman) traditionally signifies hope, youth, and unending possibilities. This sculpture of a male figure lifting a veil of clouds to reveal a female emerging from the stone symbolizes a new day casting off the darkness of night. Beach portrayed Dawn as young and beautiful, conforming to the standard artistic interpretation of the subject. Unveiling of Dawn recalls the work of sculptors Medardo Rosso and Auguste Rodin in its rough texture, unfinished quality, and symbolism.
Inscription: Signed (left side of base): C BEACH
the artist, New York (1913–at least 1916); Mr. and Mrs. George W. Davison, Greenwich, Conn. (until 1943; their gift to MMA)
New York. Armory of the Sixty-ninth Regiment. "International Exhibition of Modern Art (The Armory Show)," February 17–March 15, 1913, no. 654.
Cincinnati Art Museum. "Twenty-Third Annual Exhibition of American Art," May 27–July 31, 1916, no. 174 (lent by the artist, New York).
Terre Haute, Ind. Sheldon Swope Art Gallery. January–July 1948, no catalogue.
Utica. Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute. "1913 Armory Show, 50th Anniversary Exhibition," February 17–March 31, 1963, no. 654.
New York. Armory of the Sixty-ninth Regiment. "1913 Armory Show, 50th Anniversary Exhibition," April 6–28, 1963, no. 654.
Detroit Institute of Arts. "Arts and Crafts in Detroit 1906–1976: The Movement, the Society, the School," November 26, 1976–January 16, 1977, no. 66.
Roslyn Harbor, N. Y. Nassau County Museum of Fine Art. "The Shock of Modernism in America: The Eight and Artists of the Armory Show," April 29–July 29, 1984, unnumbered cat. (fig. 89; as "The Unveiling of Dawn").
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Human Figure in Transition, 1900–1945: American Sculpture from the Museum's Collection," April 15–September 28, 1997, extended to March 29, 1998, unnum. brochure.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Subjects and Symbols in American Sculpture: Selections from the Permanent Collection," April 11–August 20, 2000, no catalogue.
Montclair, N.J. Montclair Art Museum. "The New Spirit: American Art in the Armory Show, 1913," February 17–June 16, 2013, no. 2.
Albert TenEyck Gardner. American Sculpture: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1965, p. 141, calls it "The Unveiling of Dawn".
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. 649–50, no. 297, ill.
Gail Stavitsky in Gail Stavitsky and Laurette E. McCarthy. The New Spirit: American Art in the Armory Show, 1913. Exh. cat., Montclair Art Museum. Montclair, N.J., 2013, pp. 24, 148, no. 2, ill. p. 122 (color).