Joan M. Marter has written: "Lachaise's creation of decorative works, which began in 1904-5, when he worked for René Lalique, continued during his association with Paul Manship in the 1910s. Then, in the 1920s, he created his own ornamental bird and animal groups. In The Peacocks Lachaise arranged the three elegant birds in a frontal planal composition, the center one with tail fanned, the flanking ones in profile facing center. Although these peacocks are among the few works by Lachaise that suggest an indebtedness to Manship, their fine craftsmanship -- particularly evident in the carefully incised feathers -- manifests the skill that Lachaise had developed in his earlier production of decorative sculpture.
"Because the overt sexuality of his female nudes was offensive to many prospective buyers, animal subjects brought Lachaise his first popular success and, along with his portraits and architectural commissions, provided him with steady income. Nevertheless, he did not wish any of those ornamental pieces to be included in the 1935 retrospective of his work held at the Museum of Modern Art because he did not consider them to be significant contributions to modern sculpture." (T. Tolles, ed., American Sculpture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Volume II, New York, 2001, p. 671)
Time has proven Lachaise wrong. The Peacocks has become an icon of modern American sculpture. Fourteen replicas were made of a proposed edition of twenty. Today versions of The Peacocks are in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, Michigan; the Newark Museum, Newark, New Jersey; the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.; and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.