Jacques Lipchitz
Study for ‘Prometheus’ 1936

Artwork details

Jacques Lipchitz 1891–1973
Study for ‘Prometheus’
Etude pour 'Prométheé'
Date 1936
Medium Terracotta
Dimensions Object: 260 x 227 x 114 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Lipchitz Foundation 1982
Not on display

Display caption

In Greek mythology, Prometheus gave humans the secret of fire to enable their independent creativity. Zeus punished this act of defiance by setting Prometheus in chains and sending a vulture to attack him each day. Lipchitz saw Prometheus as a legendary artist and, more generally, a symbol of freedom. This is an early study for his monument for the 1937 International Exhibition, which he described as 'a political sculpture, propaganda for democracy'. In this composition, Prometheus restrains the vulture with one hand and holds aloft the flame with the other.

August 2004

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