Slavonic Dancer

Artist: Harriet Whitney Frishmuth (American, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 1880–1980 Waterbury, Connecticut)

Date: 1921

Medium: Bronze

Dimensions: 13 1/4 x 6 1/2 x 3 1/2 in. (33.7 x 16.5 x 8.9 cm)

Classification: Sculpture

Credit Line: Rogers Fund, 1923

Accession Number: 23.106.3


Frishmuth’s sculptures are known for their lively poses often inspired by professional dancers. For Slavonic Dancer, she collaborated with her model Leon Barté, a member of the Fokine Ballet, who suggested the intensely physical pose. The muscular figure displays fluid surfaces and an active silhouette, with contrasts of curving and angular forms. Slavonic Dancer recalls Auguste Rodin’s advice to Frishmuth when she was his pupil in Paris: “First, always look at the silhouette of a subject and be guided by it; second, remember that movement is the transition from one attitude to another.”