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FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)
FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)
FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)
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FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)
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Specified lots (sold and unsold) marked with a fil… Read more
FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)

The Sluggard

Details
FREDERIC, LORD LEIGHTON, P.R.A., R.W.S. (1830-1896)
The Sluggard
signed 'Lord Leighton' and titled 'The Sluggard'
bronze, dark brown patina
21 in. (53 cm.) high
Conceived circa 1866.
This cast circa 1910-20.
Provenance
Acquired from Alan Boyle (Antique Dealer), Brighton, 1970.
Literature
B. Coleman, The Best of British Arts & Crafts, Atglen, PA, 2004, p. 14

COMPARATIVE LITERATURE:
Frederic Leighton: 1830-1896, London, 1996, pp. 202-203, fig. 93.
B. Read, 'Leighton as a sculptor: Releasing sculpture from convention,' Apollo, London, February 1996, pp. 65-69.
Special Notice

Specified lots (sold and unsold) marked with a filled square ( ¦ ) not collected from Christie’s, 8 King Street, London SW1Y 6QT by 5.00pm on the day of the sale will, at our option, be removed to Crozier Park Royal (details below). Christie’s will inform you if the lot has been sent offsite.If the lot is transferred to Crozier Park Royal, it will be available for collection from 12.00pm on the second business day following the sale.Please call Christie’s Client Service 24 hours in advance to book a collection time at Crozier Park Royal. All collections from Crozier Park Royal will be by pre-booked appointment only.Tel: +44 (0)20 7839 9060 Email: cscollectionsuk@christies.com.If the lot remains at Christie’s, 8 King Street, it will be available for collection on any working day (not weekends) from 9.00am to 5.00pm

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Lot Essay


Most likely inspired by his model Angelo Colorossi, seen stretching after a sitting, The Sluggard, or the work's original title An Athlete Awakening from Sleep, was almost certainly conceived as a pendant to An Athlete Wrestling with a Python, 1877. The original full scale work was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1886 and was awarded a medal of honour when it was shown at the Paris Exposition Universelle three years later. Acquired from Leighton's studio sale in 1896 by Henry Tate, the full size bronze is now in the Tate Gallery (inv. N01752) and the original plaster in the Royal Academy of Arts (inv. 03/1765).
The present figure's physicality illustrates the influence of the great sculptors of the Italian Renaissance on the artist, yet Leighton was also able to evoke the spirit of the 'new school' having deftly captured a fleeting moment. Scholar Benedict Read suggests the subject can be seen 'as a symbol of the art of sculpture, liberated by Leighton, flexing itself for renewed activity after a long time in the shackles of convention' (loc. cit, p. 68).

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