Maude Adams (1872–1953) as Joan of Arc

Artist: Alphonse Mucha (Czech, Ivančice 1860–1939 Prague)

Date: 1909

Medium: Oil on canvas

Dimensions: 82 1/4 x 30 in. (208.9 x 76.2 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: Gift of A. J. Kobler, 1920

Accession Number: 20.33


Painted in Chicago in 1909, this picture depicts the American actress Maude Adams in the role of Joan of Arc in Friedrich Schiller's Die Jungfrau von Orleans (The Maid of Orleans), in which she performed at Harvard University Stadium on June 22, 1909. The portrait was made specifically for the one-night gala performance and was displayed as a poster for the event. Mucha also designed the costumes and sets and supervised the direction. Afterwards, at the actress's request, the painting served as the lobby poster for the Empire Theater in New York, where Adams regularly performed. Mucha designed the ornate, gilded frame.