John Quincy Adams Ward American
Ward’s depiction of an African American man was inspired by President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, issued on September 22, 1862. The broken manacles on the man’s left wrist and in his right hand offer a succinct commentary on the chief political and moral topic of the era, and proclaim the sculptor’s abolitionist sentiments. While emancipated and contemplating his future, the Black male is represented seated and seminude, reinforcing his transitional status between enslavement and full standing in citizenship and manhood.
#4343. The Freedman
This artwork is meant to be viewed from right to left. Scroll left to view more.