Nadelman, Elie

Nadelman, Elie

(ā`lē näd`əlmən), 1882–1946, Polish-American sculptor, b. Warsaw. He spent some time in Paris and is said to have influenced Picasso. Before he settled (1914) in the United States his work was exhibited in New York City at the Armory ShowArmory Show,
international exhibition of modern art held in 1913 at the 69th-regiment armory in New York City. It was a sensational introduction of modern art into the United States. The estimated 1,600 works included paintings representing avant-garde movements in Europe.
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 in 1913. His gracefully rounded sculptures, most often in wood or metal, have a smooth, often witty simplicity and a suavely elegant charm that have sometimes been likened to sophisticated versions of folk art, which he avidly collected. Nadelman also worked in marble, cast plaster and papier-mâché, glazed ceramic, a form of electroplating, and other media. Probably his most famous bronze is Man in the Open Air (c.1915; Mus. of Modern Art, New York City), an urbane figure clad only in a small bow tie and bowler hat, in a jaunty pose slightly reminiscent of classical antiquity. Nadelman was comparatively unknown until interest in him was revived by a retrospective exhibition (1948) at the Museum of Modern Art. His reputation was again enhanced by another retrospective (2003) at New York's Whitney Museum of American Art.

Bibliography

See biography by L. Kirstein (1973).

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Nadelman, Elie

(1882–1946) sculptor; born in Warsaw, Poland. He studied at the Warsaw Art Academy (1899) and in Paris, where he lived until 1914, then emigrated to New York City and lived in Riverdale, N.Y. He was known for many styles, such as primitivism, cubism, and neoclassicism, as in Ideal Head (c. 1915).
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.