34 3/4 x 23 1/2 x 15 1/2 in. (88.3 x 59.7 x 39.4 cm)
Gift of Mrs. Frances V. Nash, 1894
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 760
When the aged Andrew Jackson (1767–1845) sat for Powers at the White House, he requested that the sculptor not idealize him: "Make me as I am. . . . It’s the only safe rule to follow." Powers faced the difficult task of reconciling the president’s political imperative to serve the common man with his heroic reputation. A masterpiece of republican rhetoric, the highly realistic portrait reflects both of Jackson’s sobriquets: King Andrew, for his sometimes imperial style of governing, and Old Hickory, for his unbending strength. The bust was carved in marble in Florence, Italy, where Powers had settled permanently in 1837.