Mother and Child
Title: Mother and Child
Creator: William Zorach
Date: 1927-1930 (marble original)
Description: From every angle, the embrace of this mother and child leads your gaze around their figures in a continuing spiral. Over 3 years, from 1927-30, William Zorach carved 3 tons of Spanish rosa marble into his iconic Mother and Child. This bronze sculpture is one of only 6 authorized casts from the original. Zorach and his wife, Marguerite, had both displayed paintings in the Armory Show of 1913, famous as the first large American exhibition of modern art. However, he then shifted from Abstract painting to representational sculpture. He was strongly influenced by African and Native American artwork, especially the body shapes of Inuit statues. He preferred working with natural materials, using the combination of planning and improvisation inherent in the direct carving technique he adopted. His materials and his subject matter both allowed him to adopt a style that was representational yet stylized, with smooth forms and classical features. As a result, his work suggests an archetypal mother and child rather than any individual mother and child. In his autobiography Zorach wrote that someone once asked him "Why do you carve a mother and child? . . . Why don't you do a real subject like war and peace?" to which Zorach replied "Without a mother and child there would be neither war nor peace."
Subject: Public Art, Outdoor sculpture, Mother and Child, Zorach, William, 1889-1966
Rights: This work is in the public domain because it was published in the United States between 1923 and 1977 with a copyright notice but the copyright was not renewed.
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Location: Utica College, Champlin Avenue, Utica, by Deperno Hall