Freedmen's Memorial to Abraham Lincoln (Washington, DC)

thomas_ball_freedmens_memorial_2009.jpg

Dublin Core

Title

Freedmen's Memorial to Abraham Lincoln (Washington, DC)

Subject

Subject (Topic)
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865
Enslaved persons-Emancipation-United States
Public art
Public sculpture
United States President (1861-1865 : Lincoln) Emancipation Proclamation

Description

From "On the Removal of Statues": Ball’s composition includes two figures, one fully clothed, the other semi-nude. Due to the dozens of photographs that survive from the 1860s, we recognize that the standing bearded man is Abraham Lincoln. Dressed in a shirt with tie, a long coat, and trousers, Lincoln stands upright with most of his weight on one leg, in "contrapposto." Clothing and posture civilize Lincoln, marking his intelligence and morality. The kneeling man, a newly emancipated enslaved person, is semi-nude. The only article of clothing that he wears is a piece of cloth draped from his waist to the edge of his buttocks. The sinewy muscles are clearly delineated in the man’s arms, legs, and abdominal muscles. Modeled with short curly hair, the former slave is also shown with a distinctive broad nose, signifying his African ancestry. We know from the historical record that former slave Archer Alexander was “the model” for the freedman."

Creator

Ball, Thomas, 1819-1911

Source

Photograph by Renee Ater.

Date

Dedicated: April 1876

Format

JPEG

Language

English

Type

Visual Arts- Sculpture

Citation

Ball, Thomas, 1819-1911, “Freedmen's Memorial to Abraham Lincoln (Washington, DC),” Contemporary Monuments to the Slave Past, accessed April 20, 2024, https://slaverymonuments.org/items/show/1223.

Geolocation