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The Mountain

Gaston Lachaise (American (born France) 1882–1935)

Bronze, with artist-designed glass plinth
7 5/8 x 19 3/8 x 9 1/2 in. (19.4 x 49.2 x 24.1 cm) Weight: 32 lbs (bronze 16 lbs; base 16 lbs)
Credit Line:
Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949
Accession Number:
49.70.224a, b
  • Description

    Between 1913 and 1934–35 Lachaise made four variants on the theme of "The Mountain"—executed in different materials (black sandstone, fieldstone, bronze, and cast concrete) and vastly different sizes (from table top to overlifesize). In all of them, Lachaise emphasized the correspondence between the rotund figure of a reclining woman and the "fertile rolling pastures, broad and soft as fecund breasts" found in the natural landscape.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Signature: Signed and dated (back of base, left): G. Lachaise / 1924

    Marking: Foundry mark (back of base, center): ROMAN BRONZE WORKS N–Y–

  • Exhibition History

    ¦Gaston Lachaise Sculptures¦, Intimate Gallery, New York, March 7–April 3, 1927, no. 13

    ¦History of an American. Alfred Stieglitz: "291" and After¦, Philadelphia Museum of Art, July 1–November 1, 1944, no. 194

    ¦Alfred Stieglitz Exhibition: His Collection¦, Museum of Modern Art, New York, June 10–August 31, 1947, no. 4

    ¦Alfred Stieglitz: His Photographs and His Collection¦, Art Institute of Chicago, February 2–29, 1948, no. 4

    ¦From the Alfred Stieglitz Collection: An Extended Loan from The Metropolitan Museum of Art¦, Museum of Modern Art, New York, May 22–August 12, 1951, no. 664

    The Decade of the Armory Show: New Directions in American Art 1910-1920, Sixth Loan Exhibition of the Friends of the Whitney Museum of American Art, 1963-64. Whitney Museum of American Art, February 27 – April 14, 1963 [did not lend to other venues]

    ¦Gaston Lachaise (1882–1935): Sculpture and Drawings¦, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California, December 3, 1963–January 19, 1964; Whitney Museum of Art, New York, February 18–April 5, 1964, no. 45

    ¦Gaston Lachaise, 1882–1935¦, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, November 5–December 22, 1974; Frederick S. Wight Art Gallery, University of California, Los Angeles, January 26–March 9, 1975; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, May 1–June 15, 1975; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, July 12–August 31, 1975

    ¦Gaston Lachaise: Sculpture and Drawings¦, Memorial Art Gallery, University of Rochester, New York, January 20–March 4, 1979, no. 20

    ¦The Human Figure in Transition, 1900–1945: American Sculpture from the Museum's Collection¦, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, April 15, 1997–March 29, 1998

  • References

    The Dial 68 (February 1920). Reproduced as frontispiece illustration.

    Gardner, Albert Ten Eyck. American Sculpture: A Catalogue of the Collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, distributed by New York Graphic Society, 1965, p. 143

    Nordland, Gerald. Gaston Lachaise: The Man and His Work, New York: Braziller, 1974, pp. 113-115, ill. p. 115

    Joan M. Marter in American Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Vol. 2 A Catalogue of Works by Artists Born between 1865 and 1885. Ed. Thayer Tolles. New York and New Haven, 2001, pp. 678–79, cat. 316, ill.