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    Sale 7595

    20th Century British Art

    6 June 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 152

    Dame Elisabeth Frink, R.A. (1930-1993)

    Maquette for Blind Beggar and Dog

    Price Realised  


    Dame Elisabeth Frink, R.A. (1930-1993)
    Maquette for Blind Beggar and Dog
    signed 'Frink' (on the base)
    bronze with a light brown patina
    17 in. (43.2 cm.) high
    Conceived in 1957 and cast in an edition of 4.

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    Conceived in 1957, Blind Beggar and His Dog was Frink's first public commission from the architects Yorke, Rosenberg and Mardell for Market Square in Bethnal Green in London. Frink always insisted on being able to bring her own interpretation to a public commission and this piece, based on the story of Henry de Montfort, appealed to her; the wounded, battered and blinded soldier being led by a guide dog. In Frink's hands the work is in essence an example of the relationship between man and dog. Frink was to complete many public commissions in her life-time, now recognised as familiar landmarks around the world.

    Special Notice

    VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium


    Acquired by the present owner directly from the artist.

    Pre-Lot Text

    Lots 152-160

    Edward I. Bernstein's friendship with Dame Elisabeth Frink began in the late 1970s after his brother Benjamin introduced him to the artist during a visit to the United Kingdom. Edward and Benjamin subsequently became major patrons of her work, each amassing important collections.

    While Edward and Benjamin lived primarily in the United States of America, business and personal travel allowed for frequent trips to the United Kingdom where they would spend time with Frink and her husband at their home at Woolland in Dorset. The photographs of the brothers with Frink, surrounded by her work, bear witness to the many happy hours they spent with the artist.
    Edward and Ben were only too happy to support public exhibitions of Frink's work in America, where the artist was just beginning to establish a reputation. As the quality of the works the Bernsteins possessed made their participation in such events highly desirable, many items from their collections were loaned to the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C., for the exhibition of her Sculptures and Drawings in 1990. This exhibition, marking the third anniversary of the museum in its permanent home, was the artist's first major American retrospective and established her presence on the international art scene.

    While Ben ultimately donated the majority of his collection to American universities such as Villanova and Carnegie Mellon, Edward chose to house his collection of works by Frink in his Philadelphia residence.

    Edward Bernstein's collection is highly personal and sensitive. With a strong emphasis on the human figure, the group spans the range of Frink's work; from the gentle humility of Blind Beggar and Dog, 1957, to the presence and power of the four Tribute Heads, 1975.

    We are delighted to be offering the following nine works from the collection of Edward I. Bernstein.


    B. Robertson, Elisabeth Frink Sculpture Catalogue Raisonné, Salisbury, 1984, p. 145, no. 36, another cast illustrated.