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William Rush Carving His Allegorical Figure of the Schuylkill River

Thomas Eakins

American Art

On View: American Identities: A New Look, Making Art: Centennial Era, 5th Floor

This is one of several paintings In which Thomas Eakins provided an imaginary glimpse of the Philadelphia sculptor William Rush carving The Water Nymph and Bittern, which was installed in PhIladelphia's Centre Square In 1809. Although Eakins's initial motives came from a desire to restore Rush's name to the history of American art, his primary focus on the back of a strongly highlighted nude model also calls into play issues about traditional methods of art instruction. Rush was a founder of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, where Eakins taught for many years until 1886, when he was dismissed in a controversy about his allowing female students to attend life classes.

MEDIUM Oil on canvas
DATES 1908
DIMENSIONS 35 15/16 x 47 13/16 in. (91.3 x 121.5 cm)  (show scale)
SIGNATURE Signed lower center on scroll: "EAKINS 1908"
COLLECTIONS American Art
ACCESSION NUMBER 39.461
CREDIT LINE Dick S. Ramsay Fund
RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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CAPTION Thomas Eakins (American, 1844-1916). William Rush Carving His Allegorical Figure of the Schuylkill River, 1908. Oil on canvas, 35 15/16 x 47 13/16 in. (91.3 x 121.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Dick S. Ramsay Fund, 39.461
IMAGE overall, 39.461_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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RECORD COMPLETENESS Best (89%)
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