Paul Manship’s significance as one of America’s foremost sculptors of the early twentieth century lay in his ability to combine a modernist approach to form within the bounds of figurative art. The variety of his subjects, the infinite beauty of his lines and the pure delight he found in the human figure all contribute to his outstanding reputation.
This work is a bronze maquette for a proposed monument design Manship completed in 1941. During this period Manship executed a number of drawings as well as studies in bronze and plaster with aviation symbols which often centered heroic figures on top of stylized cloud bases. Examples of these aviation monument studies can be found in the collection of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., while others were destroyed by the artist, including the large plastilene the present work was modeled after.
- Excerpted from Sotheby’s NY
Then by descent to John Manship (the artist’s son)
Geraci Galleries, Rockport, Massachusetts, 1979
Private collection, MA., acquired from the above
Sotheby’s New York, 6 October 2021
Manship, John, Paul Manship, New York, pl. 154, pp. 159-60 (another version illustrated)