T03484 The Joy of Orpheus II 1945–6
Plaster, partly coated with shellac 20 1/2 × 13 1/2 × 10 (521 × 342 × 254)
Presented by the Lipchitz Foundation 1982
Lit: Bert van Bork, Jacques Lipchitz, The Artist at Work, 1966, repr. p.182 (bronze); Lipchitz 1972, p.168
A bronze cast of this sculpture was exhibited at the Buchholz Gallery, New York, in 1946 (Jacques Lipchitz, March–April 1946, 20). Also included was ‘The Joy of Orpheus I’ 1949 (19, repr.), which is the same composition and size, but has thinner shapes, cut to an edge.
Lipchitz described the subject as a woman seated in a man's lap, the whole composition also resembling the shape of a harp:
Another piece I made before going to Europe was the ‘Joy of Orpheus’, 1945. It has to do with the love of my wife. The woman is sitting on the man's lap. They are happy and her arm is raised in the air; and all of it takes on the form of a harp. I think of it as a very interesting sculpture, poetic and beautiful. It comes so directly from my emotions, although everything I do comes from emotions (Lipchitz, loc.cit.)…