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"Terrier Dog Playing" | Edith Baretto Parsons

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United States, 1878-1956

"Crouched Terrier Dog"

Patinated bronze with plaster filled core | signed in cast "E.B. PARSONS (c)" and cold-stamped "GORHAM CO FOUNDERS"

Item # 302RGT02P 

A charming example from Edith Parsons' series of terriers, the present example showcases the playful spirit of the high-energy dog. The dog has found an article of clothing and is playing keep-away, presumably with an unhappy owner. It is beautifully cast with a highly modernistic free-form surface that perfectly captures in bronze the handling and shaping of the wax model - it is so tangible that you can almost feel Parsons' fingers working the material, her stylus working texture into the chaotic fur of the dog. It is finished in a complex and nuanced surface patina that ranges from reddish-oxide to medium-brown with underlying hues of green along with trace verdigris in crevices.

Born in Houston, Texas in 1878, Edith Barretto Parsons was a pupil at the Art Students League of New York under Daniel Chester French, J. Twachtmann and George Grey Bernard.  She lived and worked in New York, where she died in 1956.  She was a member of the National Sculpture Society and the National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors.  Her work "Duck Girl" is held in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  She was commissioned for numerous important public works including a memorial fountain to John Galloway (Public Park, Memphis, TN), the pediment figures for the main entrance of the Liberal Arts Building of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (St. Louis, MO 1904), a memorial monument (Cemetery, St. Paul, Minn) and a monument to "Soldiers of World War" (Summit, NJ).  Much of her work was cast by Gorham Founders in New York, including a series of several terriers and other dogs, The Baby Goat, Baby Pan, The Big Duck and others.

Literature & Further Reading:

  • Art Bronzes, Michael Forrest
  • E. Benezit Dictionary of Artists, Vol. X, Gründ, 2006, p. 941
  • Bronzes: Sculptors and Founders 1800-1930, Vol. IV, Berman, p. 947 [several studies of dogs at play]
  • Contemporary American Sculpture, California Palace of the Legion of Honor, 1929, p. 247
  • Mantle Fielding's Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors and Engravers, Opitz, p. 714-15
  • The Dictionary of Western Sculptors in Bronze, Mackay, p. 288
  • Dictionary of American Sculptors, 18th Century to Present, 1984, Opitz, p. 306

Measurements: 5" H x 2 1/2" D x 7" W

Condition Report:
A very good state of preservation. Trace verdigris in crevices. Carefully cleaned and sealed.