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Lot 224: LEONARD W. VOLK
29 October 2016
Wells, ME, USA
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Description: [LINCOLN] LEONARD W. VOLK (1828-1895) American sculptor. Most famous for making a life mask of American President Abraham Lincoln. In 1857, he settled in Chicago, where he helped to establish the Academy of Design and was for eight years its head. In 1860 he made a life mask of Lincoln, of whom only one other was ever made (by Clark Mills in 1865). 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. Signed 1895 bank check. VG..
Condition Report: VG