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Soldat qui marche
stamped, dated and numbered on the left side ARCHIPENKO 1917
6/10 F
--bronze with light brown patina
Height: 45¾in. (116.2cm.)
Original painted plaster version executed in 1917; this bronze version cast posthumously by the estate of the artist, number six in an edition of 10
B. Cendrars, T. Daubler and I. Goll, Archipenko Album, Potsdam, 1921, pl. 26 (original painted plaster version illustrated)
M. Raynal, A. Archipenko avec 32 reproductions en phototypie, Rome, 1923, pl. 21 (original painted plaster version illustrated)
A. Archipenko, Archipenko: Fifty Creative Years 1908-1958, New York, 1960, pl. 19 (enlarged wooden model illustrated in color)
ed. D. Karshan, Archipenko: International Visionary, Washington, D.C., 1969, no. 32 (another cast illustrated, pl. 46)
K.J. Michaelsen, Archipenko: A Study of the Early Works 1908-1963, Danville, Kentucky, 1985, no. 34 (another cast illustrated, pp. 86-87)

Lot Essay

In contrast to the convex and concave forms which he used to depict the female figure, in Soldat qui marche, Archipenko adopts conical and cylindrical shapes to create a mechanical and far more abstract vision of the human body. Although the soldier carries no gun, the effect of the sculpture is weapon-like, and the exaggerated diagonal axis creates a strong sense of forward movement. It is one of the few sculptures to come out of this period which successfully and unsentimentally expresses the dehumanization of war.

Archipenko originally executed this sculpture in painted plaster, 15¾in. high. Around 1950 he made an enlarged version in wood, 46in., which served as a model for the posthumous edition of ten bronze casts established by his estate.

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