gawd I love Yosemite!
Roadtrip for the weekend.
Winner - cutest gif set ever
Seven week old puppies playing with mommy.
Biking can be so much fun
Pictured above is Edmonia Lewis (bottom), along with her sculptures The Death of Cleopatra (top left) and Forever Free (top right).
I am not sure how to begin even trying to summarize the fascinating life of Edmonia Lewis and her sculptures. The Smithsonian magazine’s 1996 article on her does a far better job than I ever could, so I encourage you to check it out!
The Death of Cleopatra now resides in the Smithsonian American Art Museum (the source of the picture of it above). But the sculpture almost fell into complete obscurity after wowing the public at the Centennial Exposition of 1876 in Philadelphia. SAAM also has a brief biography on Edmonia that’s worth exploring. Wikipedia’s article on Lewis is also a fine place to start, given the number of great references and sources listed. It’s also the source of Lewis’s portrait above.
The photo of Forever Free (top right) is from the book Emancipation and the Freed in American Sculpture, A Study in Interpretation by Freeman Henry Morris Murray that can be found in our collection of books online. The sculpture is now in the collection of the Howard University Gallery of Art. The author, Freeman Henry Morris Murray, is fascinating in his own right, being dubbed the first Black art historian. (He doesn’t have a Wikipedia page, for all you Wikipedians out there who would like to volunteer.)
The life Edmonia Lewis forged at a time when being anything but white or male would almost certainly relegate you to the dustbin of history stands as an inspiration. Do yourself a favor and don’t resist exploring more.