Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Sprite

Artist:
Frank Lloyd Wright (American, Richland Center, Wisconsin 1867–1959 Phoenix, Arizona)
Artist:
Alfonso Iannelli (American, Andretta, Italy 1888–1965 Chicago)
Date:
ca. 1914
Geography:
Made in Chicago, Illinois, United States
Medium:
Painted cement
Dimensions:
65 x 14 x 12 in. (165.1 x 35.6 x 30.5 cm)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John T. Steele, 1979
Accession Number:
1979.304
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 744
"Sprite" was originally part of a large sculpture program for Wright’s Midway Gardens in Chicago. Built for Edward C. Waller Jr. and Oscar Friedman in 1914, the complex was designed as an entertainment center. Interior and exterior areas provided for dining, dancing, and concerts, but the complex declined into a common beer garden within two years of its opening. With the advent of Prohibition in 1920, it was converted for other uses; in 1929, it was demolished. Iannelli was noted for his poster designs as well as for his architectural and decorative sculpture. Strongly tectonic, the figure is composed of motifs commonly found in Wright's architectural ornament. The faceting of the face is closely tied to Cubism, a movement that had gained international influence by 1914.
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