• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12165

    American Art

    22 November 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 32

    Harriet Whitney Frishmuth (1880-1980)

    Peter Pan

    Price Realised  


    Harriet Whitney Frishmuth (1880-1980)
    Peter Pan
    inscribed "#7 HARRIET W. FRISHMUTH. 1936' and stamped 'ROMAN BRONZE WORKS INC. N.Y.' (along the base)
    bronze with brown patina
    19 in. (48.3 cm.) high; 26 in. (66 cm.) long
    Modeled circa 1935-36.

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    Harriet Frishmuth wrote of the inspiration for Peter Pan: "A cousin of mine whom I never met always wanted one of my pieces. After her death, her husband, Dr. Craig, came to the studio and asked me if I could make a Peter Pan to place between her grave and his in Laurel Hill Cemetery, Philadelphia, as she had an affinity for Peter Pan and hated being 'grown up.' I told the little boy who posed for the piece the story of Peter Pan and said to him, ‘If you were out in the dark, in the woods, and you looked up at the stars for the very first time, what position would you take?’ He looked at me with his eyes bright and said, ‘I’d take this pose’ and sat right down on the model table in the pose of my Peter Pan.” ("Harriet Whitney Frishmuth, American Sculptor," The Courier, vol. IX, no. 1, Syracuse, New York, 1971, p. 29)

    Peter Pan was cast in an edition of ten, five by Gorham and five by Roman Bronze Works. Unfortunately, the originally commissioned sculpture for Florence Frishmuth Craig's memorial was stolen in 1971. Other examples of Peter Pan are in the collections of the Forest Lawn Museum, Glendale, California, and the New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, Connecticut.


    Private collection, New York, circa 1970s.
    By descent to the present owner.


    Brookgreen Gardens, Sculpture By Harriet Whitney Frishmuth, Murrell’s Inlet, South Carolina, 1937, n.p., another example illustrated.
    "Harriet Whitney Frishmuth, American Sculptor," The Courier, vol. IX, no. 1, Syracuse, New York, 1971, p. 29, another example illustrated.
    J. Conner, L.R. Lehmbeck, T. Tolles, F.L. Hohmann III, Captured Motion, The Sculpture of Harriet Whitney Frishmuth: A Catalogue of Works, New York, 2006, pp. 85, 266, 277, no. 1935:3, another example illustrated.