Alexander Phimister Proctor American
Cast by Gorham Manufacturing Company American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 765

Government-sanctioned hunting reduced the North American bison (or buffalo) population from millions to mere hundreds by the early 1880s. Awareness of the animal’s plight inspired numerous statuettes that served as three-dimensional metaphors for a bygone past. Proctor’s most recognizable work, both at full scale and in reduction, is his Buffalo. In 1911 he was commissioned to produce four monumental bronze bison for the pylons of Q Street (Dumbarton) Bridge in Washington, D.C. After visiting Buffalo National Park in Alberta, Canada, to observe a bison herd, Proctor modeled the wooly-maned animal in a stately pose, the only motion a swish of its raised tail.

Buffalo, Alexander Phimister Proctor (American, Bosanquet, Ontario 1860–1950 Palo Alto, California), Bronze, American

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