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    Sale 2046

    Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale

    6 November 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 285

    Alexander Archipenko (1887-1964)

    Torso in Space

    Price Realised  


    Alexander Archipenko (1887-1964)
    Torso in Space
    signed and numbered 'Archipenko 3/6 F' (on the back)
    bronze with brown and green patina
    Length: 60 in. (152.4 cm.)
    Conceived in 1935; this bronze version cast in 1968 by the estate of the artist

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    The Archipenko Foundation will include this work in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of sculptures by Alexander Archipenko.

    The Torso in Space series is one of Archipenko's major achievements of the mid-1930s, and was created while the artist was living in Los Angeles. According to Donald Karshan, there are several versions of this sculpture. The first version was executed in 1935 measuring 20 in. (50.8 cm.). Archipenko subsequently cast a second version measuring 22 in. (57.1 cm.) and in 1936 he enlarged the work to 60 in. (152.5 cm.).

    The present sculpture shows Archipenko's monumental female figure as an elegant abstracted form. Karshan writes, "The centuries-old theme of the reclining woman was expressed by sculptors as integral to the base on which the figure reposed. Archipenko 'freed' this subject from its horizontal moorings, so to speak, in a streamlined, curvilinear, near-abstract shape of the female form that appears to float or be independent of its base" (in op. cit., 1985, p. 5).


    Estate of the artist.
    Bernard Danenberg Galleries, Inc., New York.
    Acquired from the above by the late owner, October 1970.

    Pre-Lot Text

    Property from the Estate of Gerald Tsai, Jr.


    A. Archipenko, Archipenko, Fifty Creative Years 1908-1958, New York, 1960 (other versions illustrated, pls. 184-186).
    D.H. Karshan, ed., Archipenko, International Visionary, Washington D.C., 1969, p. 115, no. 52 (other casts illustrated, p. 78, pl. 114).
    D.H. Karshan, Archipenko, The Sculpture and Graphic Art, Including a Print Catalogue Raisonné, Tübingen, 1974, p. 125 (another version illustrated).
    D.H. Karshan, Archipenko, Sculpture, Drawings and Prints, 1908-1963, Danville, Kentucky, 1985, p. 139, nos. 73-74 (other versions illustrated, p. 138).
    D.H. Karshan, Archipenko, Themes and Variations 1908-1963, Daytona Beach, 1989, p. 66 (another version illustrated, p. 67).