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The Male Form / Percy Bryant Baker (1881-1970) Music 25 in. (63.5 cm.) high, on a 2 3/8 in. (6 cm.) high wooden base

Lot 46
Percy Bryant Baker
7 June 2022, 10:00 EDT
New York

Sold for US$5,100 inc. premium

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Percy Bryant Baker (1881-1970)

inscribed '© / Bryant Baker / 1932' (along the base) and inscribed 'NO.I' (on the base) and inscribed 'no 1. B.B' (underneath the base)
bronze with brown patina
25 in. (63.5 cm.) high, on a 2 3/8 in. (6 cm.) high wooden base


Private collection, New York, acquired from the artist.
Sale, Parke-Bernet, New York, October 9, 1963, lot 22, sold by the above.
Private collection of a Lady.
Sale, Leland Little, Hillsborough, North Carolina, December 5, 2020, lot 171, sold by the above. (as Art Deco Male nude with outstretched arm)
Private collection, North Carolina, acquired from the above.
Acquired from the above by the present owner.

Percy Bryant Baker's Music is one of the most sophisticated works in the artist's oeuvre that beautifully exemplifies his perceptive abilities as a sculptor. In the present work, it is believed that Baker depicts Orpheus, the fabled musician, poet, and prophet in ancient Greek mythology standing in an elegant contrapposto pose with his right arm extended outward. Cradled in Orpheus' left arm is his lyre that his father Apollo gave to him and that he played with such mastery that neither enemies nor beasts could resist his melodies. Bryant has given Orpheus' an expression of anguish and sorrow, suggesting that Bryant is possibly depicting the moment in the story of Orpheus and Eurydice when Orpheus, learning of Eurydice's death, sung his grief with his lyre, moving every human and God. When the present work was sold at Parke-Bernet in New York on October 9, 1963, the work was accompanied by a notarized statement from Baker stating that the present work is a unique cast.

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