Jacques Lipchitz

Study for a Garden Statue


Object: 140 x 35 x 38 mm
Presented by the Lipchitz Foundation 1982

Catalogue entry

T03523 Study for a Garden Statue 1921

Plaster, coated with shellac 5 1/2 × 1 3/8 × 1 1/2 (140 × 35 × 38)
Inscribed ‘144’ in brown paint under base
Presented by the Lipchitz Foundation 1982
Lit: Lipchitz 1972, pp.67–8, 110 and repr.fig.52 (bronze); Arnason 1969 repr. fig.7 (bronze)

This sculpture was identified by Lipchitz as a preliminary model for a garden sculpture for Coco Chanel ‘intended to be seen in a vista of forest at the end of an alley of grass’ (loc.cit). It was never carried out, like the ‘Reclining Woman’ of the same date (T03520), which was also a study for a sculpture for the same place.

The subject is a couple embracing, and this group is placed on a tall geometrical column. This dominant pedestal looks back to the near abstract ‘Sculpture, 1916’ in which the figure of a pregnant woman is almost invisible inside a cleft column, and forward to the large bronze ‘Figure’, 1926–30, for which there is a small terracotta study in the Tate Gallery (‘Sketch for a Figure’, 1926, T03505. Both are reproduced in Lipchitz. The Cubist Period 1913–1930, Marlborough-Gerson Gallery, New York, March–April 1968, nos.24 and 62).

The plaster is presumably an original cast of 1921. The instructions to the foundry were on an attached label ‘“Sketch for a garden statue” /3 7/ off make plate’ with an indication that three bronzes had been cast.

[For T03397 and T03479 to T03534 the foundry inscriptions, and reproductions of casts in other materials in the books listed below, are recorded. Abbreviations used:

Arnason 1969 H.H. Arnason, Jacques Lipchitz: Sketches in Bronze, 1969

Lipchitz 1972 Jacques Lipchitz, My Life in Sculpture, 1972

Stott 1975 Deborah A. Stott, Jacques Lipchitz and Cubism, 1975 (reprinted 1978)

Otterlo 1977 A.M. Hammacher, Lipchitz in Otterlo, Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, 1977

Centre Pompidou 1978 Nicole Barbier, Lipchitz: oeuvres de Jacques Lipchitz (1891–1973) dans les collections du Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris, 1978

Arizona 1982 Jacques Lipchitz. Sketches and Models in the collection of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson, Arizona. Introduction and catalogue by Peter Bermingham, 1982]

Published in:
The Tate Gallery 1982-84: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1986