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Sleeping Muse

Constantin Brancusi (French (born Romania), Hobita 1876–1957 Paris)

Date:
1910
Medium:
Bronze
Dimensions:
6 3/4 x 9 1/2 x 6 in. (17.1 x 24.1 x 15.2 cm) Weight: 12 lbs
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949
Accession Number:
49.70.225
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2011 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
  • Description

    Here, the languor of the ovoid shape responding to gravity suggests the heaviness of sleep. The sleeping head, one of Brancusi's first thematic cycles, occupied the artist for almost twenty years. This bronze is one of four cast in 1910 from a marble of the previous year for which Baroness Renée Irana Franchon was the model.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Signature: Inscribed (incised on back of neck): BRANCUS Marks (Stamped on back of neck): CIRE/C.VALSUANI/PERDUE

  • Exhibition History

    New York, Little Galleries of the Photo-Secession, 291 Fifth Avenue. An Exhibition of Original Sculpture, in Bronze, Marble, and Wood, by Constantine Brancusi, of Paris, March 12 – April 1, 1914. No. 4. [Printed checklist]

    Philadelphia , Philadelphia Museum of Art, History of an American. Alfred Stieglitz: ‘291’ and After, Selections from the Stieglitz Collection, July 1 – November 1, 1944. p. 15 (no. 109 (as Sleep).

    New York, Museum of Modern Art, Alfred Stieglitz: His Collection, June 10 – August 31, 1947. No. 1 (as Sleep). [typed checklist]

    New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Stieglitz and His Galleries, April 9 – October 17, 1965. [no catalogue]

    Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, September 26 – November 2, 1969. New York: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, November 21, 1969 – February 15, 1970. Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago, March 14 – April 26, 1970. Constantin Brancusi 1876-1957: A Retrospective Exhibition. Catalogue by Sidney Geist. P. 45 (ill).

    The Hague: Gemeentemuseum den Haag, September 19 – November 29, 1970. Brancusi. Pp. 50-51 (no. 12). Illustrated.

    New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Masterpieces of 50 Centuries, November 14, 1970 – June 1, 1971. P. 331 (no. 402).

    Bellevue, Washington: Bellevue Art Museum. Five Thousand Years of Faces. Jan 30 – July 30, 1983. N.p. [no illustration]

    Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, January 28 – April 22, 2001. Alfred Stieglitz and Modern Art in America. Pp. 156, 163, 165 (pl. 39).

    Athens, Greece: National Gallery-Alexandros Soutzos Museum, June 9 – September 30, 2004. Six Leading Sculptors and the Human Figure. Pp. 287 (plate IV.44), 295 (fig. IV.4).

  • References

    Elizabeth Luther Carey, “Art at Home and Abroad,” New York Times, March 22, 1914, p. SM11.

    Henry McBride, New York Sun, March 22, 1914, page number unknown. Cited in Camera Work 45 (January 1914 / June 1914), p. 26.

    Charles H. Caffin in the New York American. Cited in Camera Work 45 (January 1914 / June 1914), p. 26.

    S.P., “A Stieglitz Tribute,” New York Times, August 22, 1965, p. X 17 (ill.).

    Mircea Deac, Constantin Brâncus?i (Bucarest 1966), pp. 103 (fig. 52), 156.

    Athena Tacha Spear, “A Contribution to Brancusi Chronology,” Art Bulletin 48 (March 1966), p. 53.

    Sidney Geist, Brancusi: A Study of the Sculpture, New York 1968, p. 218 (no. 57d).

    Nora B. Beeson. Guide to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. MMA. NY, 1972, p. 277, illustrated p. 276 no. 4.

    Sidney Geist, Brancusi: The Sculpture and Drawings. New York 1975, p. 178 (no. 73c).

    Pontus Hultén, Natalia Dumitresco, and Alexandre Istrati, Brancusi, Paris 1986, p. 284 (no. 62c).

    Radu Varia, Brancusi, trans. Mary Vaudoyer, New York 1986, p. 139 (ill.).

    Friedrich Teja Bach, Constantin Brancusi: Metamorphosen Plastischer Form Köln 1987, pp. 430-31 (no. 99).

    Gary Tinterow et al. The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Modern Europe, New York 1987, p. 117 (ill.).

    Anna C. Chave, Constantin Brancusi: Shifting the Bases of Art, New Haven and London 1993, p. 129 (fig. 4.6), unpaginated color plate.

    Greenough, Sarah, et. al. Modern Art and America: Alfred Stieglitz and His New York Galleries. National Gallery of Art, 2000. Cat. no. 36, p. 156, 158, 159 (ill. in color), 163.

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