Jacques Lipchitz
Study for Hagar 1948

Artwork details

Jacques Lipchitz 1891–1973
Study for Hagar
Etude pour Hagar
Date 1948
Medium Plaster and iron filings
Dimensions Object: 241 x 222 x 203 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Lipchitz Foundation 1982
Not on display

Display caption

According to the Bible, Hagar was the mistress of Abraham and bore him a son who became the ancestor of the Arabs. Mother and son were sent into exile by Abraham's wife Sarah, the mother of the ancestor of the Jews. In choosing to work on this theme in 1948, the year in which Israel was established as an independent state, Lipchitz seems to have wanted to appeal in this work for sympathy for the dispossessed Arabs. In his autobiography Lipchitz wrote that 'the Jews and the Arabs ... should live together as brothers, which they were able to do for many centuries'. The 'Hagar' theme expressed, he said, 'tragedy and suffering with tenderness and hope for the future'.

March 1998

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