Lot 393: Leonard Volk (1828-1895) American sculptor

East Coast Books

October 29, 2016, 4:00 PM EST
Wells, ME, US
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Description: Leonard Volk (1828-1895) American sculptor. Most famous for making a life mask of American President Abraham Lincoln. In the early part of spring in 1860, during Abraham Lincoln's visit to Chicago, Volk asked him to sit for a bust. When Lincoln agreed, the artist decided to start by doing a life mask. Lincoln found the process of letting wet plaster dry on his face, followed by a skin-stretching removal process, "anything but agreeable." But he endured it with good humor, and when he saw the final bust, he was quite pleased, declaring it "the animal himself." Volk later used the life mask and bust of 1860 as the basis for other editions, including a full-length statue of Lincoln. In 1848 he opened a studio at St Louis, Missouri, and in 1855 was sent by his wife's cousin, politician Stephen A. Douglas, to Rome to study. Returning to America in 1857, he settled in Chicago, where he helped to establish an Academy of Design and was for eight years its head. Among his principal works: the Douglas monument at Chicago, Illinois; AND statues of Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas in the Illinois State Capitol at Springfield, Illinois. Offered here are 22 signed bank checks by Leonard Volk, 1893-1895. These were culled from Leonard Volk's checks because they're in less perfect condition. One is separated & held together with pin; others may have a somewhat smudged area of his signature; cancel stamp competes with signature; stained etc.
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