Edmonia Lewis

National Portrait Gallery

Edmonia Lewis

Artist
Henry Rocher, 1826 - 1887
Sitter
Edmonia Lewis, 4 Jul 1844 - 17 Sep 1907
Exhibition Label
Edmonia Lewis achieved international recognition as a sculptor during the second half of the nineteenth century. Educated at Oberlin College, she settled first in Boston, where she created portrait busts and medallions of prominent politicians, writers, and abolitionists. In 1865 she relocated to Rome and joined an active community of American and British artists living abroad. Adopting a neoclassical style then widely popular, she found inspiration in stories from the Bible and classical mythology, as well as from African American history. Her sculpture Forever Free (1867) depicts an African American couple as they first hear news of the Emancipation Proclamation. The work led one critic to exclaim, "No one, not born subject to the 'Cotton King,' could look upon this piece of sculpture without profound emotion." Although Lewis enjoyed unprecedented success for several decades, she died in obscurity.
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
c. 1870
Object number
NPG.94.95
Restrictions & Rights
Usage conditions apply
Type
Photograph
Medium
Albumen silver print
Dimensions
Image/Sheet: 9.2 x 5.2 cm (3 5/8 x 2 1/16")
Mount: 10 x 6.2 cm (3 15/16 x 2 7/16")
Mat: 45.7 x 35.6 cm (18 x 14")
National Portrait Gallery
Topic
Costume\Headgear\Hat
Interior\Studio\Photography
Edmonia Lewis: Female
Edmonia Lewis: Visual Arts\Artist\Sculptor
Portrait
Record ID
npg_NPG.94.95
GUID (Link to Original Record)
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/sm4c372d48c-2cc3-4293-8f28-cbaf4ad447b2