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Chaim Gross

American Art

Chaim Gross, the son of an Austrian woodcutter, was an early proponent of direct carving and single-handedly revived the art of wood carving at a time when his peers were working in stone. The subjects of many of his works are acrobats and dancers. Ballerina reflects Gross's interest in the carving traditions of tribal art, as well as his love and understanding of the often exotic hard woods that were his materials of choice. For many years, Gross taught sculpture at the Brooklyn Museum Art School, which was a part of the Museum from 1941 to 1985.

MEDIUM Imbuya wood
  • Place Made: United States
  • DATES 1940
    DIMENSIONS 52 x 12 x 11 3/4 in. (132.1 x 30.5 x 29.8 cm)  (show scale)
    SIGNATURE Inscribed on front of base: "CHAIM GROSS / [symbol of two curved lines connected by horizontal bar] / 1940"
    COLLECTIONS American Art
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Courtesy of the Fine Arts Program, U.S. General Services Administration and the Ella C. Woodward Memorial Fund
    RIGHTS STATEMENT No known copyright restrictions
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    CAPTION Chaim Gross (American, born Austria, 1904-1991). Ballerina, 1940. Imbuya wood, 52 x 12 x 11 3/4 in. (132.1 x 30.5 x 29.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Courtesy of the Fine Arts Program, U.S. General Services Administration and the Ella C. Woodward Memorial Fund, 40.874
    IMAGE overall, 40.874.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2004
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Carved figure of ballerina with hands on hips standing on square base; blocky, stylized forms; skin is sanded smooth and dress, shoes, and base roughly worked. Condition: Good, small crack in edge of skirt above proper right leg.
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