Arshile Gorky Catalogue Raisonné
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Catalogue Entry

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Photo: Deborah Denker
P008
(Nude [After Rodin's "Pygmalion and Galatea"])
1925–26
Oil on canvas
33 5/16 x 29 3/8 in. (84.6 x 74.6 cm)
Front, lower left: A Gorky
Reverse not inscribed
Literature
Grand Central School of Art Catalogue (1926–1927 season). New York: Marguerite Tuttle, Inc, ill. in b/w, p. 19, as "Painted by Arshele Gorky."
Jordan, Jim M. "The Paintings of Arshile Gorky: New Discoveries, New Sources, and Chronology." In The Paintings of Arshile Gorky: A Critical Catalogue, by Jim M. Jordan and Robert Goldwater. New York and London: New York University Press, 1982, discussed pp. 19–20, as "Nudes."
Jordan, Jim M. "Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings." In The Paintings of Arshile Gorky: A Critical Catalogue, by Jim M. Jordan and Robert Goldwater. New York and London: New York University Press, 1982, no. 8, ill. in b/w, p. 133, as "Nude (After Rodin?)."
Herrera, Hayden. Arshile Gorky: His Life and Work. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2003, fig. 66, ill. in b/w, as "Nude (After Rodin)."
Taylor, Michael R. "Rethinking Arshile Gorky." In Arshile Gorky: A Retrospective, Kathleen Krattenmaker, ed. Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2009. Exhibition catalogue, fig. 3, ill. in color, p. 21, as "After Rodin."
Notes
Reverse, in pencil, upper stretcher bar, left [not in artist's hand]: Arshile / Gorky / 1/31/25
The reverse inscription information and marking on the upper stretcher bar are known from a photograph provided by the owner.

Commentary

The painting is after Auguste Rodin's (1840–1917) marble sculpture, Pygmalion and Galatea, c. 1908–1909. The artist Stergis M. Stergis (1897–1987), who shared a studio with Gorky in the mid-1920s, recalled that Gorky painted this picture at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in a gallery devoted to Rodin's sculpture. Stergis explained: "The Rodin Gallery was right at the main entrance . . . [Gorky] set up his easel. . . People were attracted and stood around watching him instead of going to the gallery. There was quite a crowd over there, every day, when he was painting."1 

A reproduction of the painting accompanies Gorky's faculty profile in the Grand Central School of Art's 1926–27 course catalogue. At that time, Gorky taught an evening class that focused on cast drawing and figure composition.

1. The location of the Rodin Gallery "remained as it was [in 1912] for over a decade [located in Wing D, first floor, Room 13; today, Gallery 301], after which the Rodin collection was moved around on the Museum's first floor and eventually integrated into a gallery devoted to modern European sculpture." See: Elyse Nelson, "Sculpture on the Move: A Century of Rodin at The Met," Now at The Met, February 14, 2018, https://www.metmuseum.org/blogs/now-at-the-met/2018/history-of-auguste-rodin-at-the-met; Hayden Herrera, Arshile Gorky: His Life and Work (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2003), 136–37.

2. Grand Central School of Art, Grand Central Terminal Building, New York City, "Season 1926 to 1927: A Modern School of Art," 11, 19, AGF Archives. 

Auguste Rodin, Pygmalion and Galatea, modeled 1889, carved ca. 1908–9, marble, overall: 38 1/4 × 35 × 30 in. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Gift of Thomas F. Ryan, in memory of William M. Laffan, 1910 (10.31).

After works by other artists: Rodin

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