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The Flight of Night - Item #232

$ 850.00

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19 Inches High x 29 Inches Wide x 10 Inches Deep

This piece is also known as The Horses of Anahita. American artist William Morris Hunt (1824-1879) was intrigued by Anahita, the Persian goddess of the moon and the night. Most prolific in painting, Hunt was also a sculptor and lithographer. He was brother to architect Richard Morris Hunt. The composition resembles a sketch he created circa 1847 and one of the two murals he painted in 1878 in the Assembly Chamber of the New York State Capitol in Albany (that are no longer visible due to the new ceiling constructed in 1888). Anahita, not depicted in the sculpture, drives the horses forward as day breaks while an attendant to the left aids her with the unruly horses. In exquisite relief, the horses leap out from the background. The head and shoulders of the horse to the right are modeled fully in the round. Hunt started sculpting the artwork in 1848.

Reproductions were cast during Hunt's lifetime and later by his estate, as well as by P.P. Caproni and Brother. Several museums own casts, such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.

 

Artist: William Morris Hunt

Museum: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston, among others

Time Period: Modern, c. 1848-1850

1911 Catalog ID # - 10009

 

Sources:

"Assembly Murals." New York State Assembly, http://assembly.state.ny.us/Tour/?sec=murals. 

Dimmick, Lauretta. "The Horses of Anahita or The Flight of Night, ca. 1848-50." American Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Catalogue of Works by Artists Born before 1865, vol. 1. Edited by Thayer Tolles, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1999, pp. 100-102. Google Books, https://books.google.com/books?id=8jr6vNLLYMgC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false.

Dimmick, Lauretta. "William Morris Hunt (1824-1879)." American Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Catalogue of Works by Artists Born before 1865, vol. 1. Edited by Thayer Tolles, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1999, pp. 99-100. Google Books, https://books.google.com/books?id=8jr6vNLLYMgC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false.  

"The Horses of Anahita or The Flight of Night." The Metropolitan Museum of Art, https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/11178. 

Van Hook, Bailey. "A Short History of the Movement. 1876-1893: Beginnings." The Virgin and the Dynamo: Public Murals in American Architecture, 1893-1917. Ohio University Press, 2003, pp. 7-9. Google Books, https://books.google.com/books?id=EQIduknzlRwC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false.

"William Morris Hunt." Los Angeles County Museum of Art, https://collections.lacma.org/node/167934.

"William Morris Hunt." Smithsonian American Art Museum, https://americanart.si.edu/artist/william-morris-hunt-2359.