Flight of the Arrow (or Archer), 1914

Bronze, green patina

One of the bronzes Allen sculpted in his first professional year using the same male model, was the figure of an archer that he called “Flight of the Arrow.” He names four of these bronzes as having been done in the winter of 1914-1915. The young athlete is kneeling with his left knee on the ground, his foot flattened behind him and his right elbow leaning on his raised right knee. He has just released an arrow, the torso turned at the waist and the face looking outward and up, watching the path of its flight. From all viewing angles this little figure is an interesting and graceful work of art.

The modeling of the anatomy is clear and pleasing. The skin is smooth and reflects the light in planes. The face of the man is handsome and expressive without being too detailed and the hair is full and thickly wavy on the front and sides. The attitude of the body with the shoulders tilted downward at an angle and the torso and head turned to the left would spin the figure counter clockwise if it were on a center pole, the weight of the head up to the right being balanced by the extended arm gripping the archer’s bow down to the left. The base is roughly cut as if he were sitting on a rock outcropping with texture created by a combing tool.

Modeled in clay and cast in bronze, it was finished with a green patina. The signature F.W.Allen is on the back of the base below the foot. There is no date or foundry mark on the bronze, but the Allen diary lists “Flight of the Arrow” in his list of work done in the same time period: Cain, Flight of the Arrow, Moon Sprite and Primeval Prayer.

Size: 11 ½ inches x 8 inches x 6 ½ inches (bow is included)
Location: private collection
Signature: F.W.Allen inscribed on the vertical part of the base below the foot
Exhibition: Indianapolis Museum of Art, John Herron Art Institute, December 1923 joint exhibition of Frank W. Benson and Frederick W. Allen

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