French Sculpture Census

photo credit : David Heald / Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas
artist © : public domain

DUCHAMP-VILLON, Raymond
Damville, Eure 1876 - Cannes, Alpes-Maritimes 1918

Athlète (Torse de jeune homme)
The Athlete (Torso of a Young Man)

1910
terracotta

statuette
22 3/8 x 12 3/4 x 16 1/2

Acc. No. : 1986.A.04
Credit Line : Raymond and Patsy Nasher Collection, Dallas, Texas

Dallas, Texas, Raymond and Patsy Nasher Collection, Nasher Sculpture Center

www.nashersculpturecenter.org

Provenance

  • Artist
  • Jacques Villon
  • Marcel Duchamp
  • Villiers-sous-Grez, France, Madame Marcel Duchamp
  • New York, Arnold Herstand & Company
  • 1986, Dallas, Texas, Raymond and Patsy Nasher Collection

Bibliography

  • 2003 Nash, Giménez and Brenson
    Steven A. Nash, Carmen Giménez, Michael Brenson, A Century of Sculpture: The Nasher Collection, Dallas, The Nasher Foundation, 2003 (first published in 1997, expanded and republished in 2003 by The Nasher Foundation on the occasion of the inauguration in October 2003 of the Nasher Sculpture Center), p. 118-119, repr., 364

Exhibition

  • Museum's website:
  • 1914 Prague
    Moderní Umení XXXXV, Vystrava, Manes Fine Art Society, Prague, 1914. Exhibition catalogue. (This torso? This terracotta?)
  • 1914 Paris
    Galerie André Groult, Paris, 1914. (This terracotta?)
  • 1926 Paris
    Exposition Rétrospective, Salon des Indépendants, Paris, 1926. (This terracotta?)
  • 1929 New York
    Memorial Exhibition of the Works of Raymond Duchamp-Villon, Brummer Gallery, New York, 1929. Exhibition catalogue. (This terracotta?)
  • 1931 Paris
    Sculptures de Duchamp-Villon, Galerie Pierre, Paris, 1931. Exhibition catalogue. (This terracotta?)
  • 1984 Tokyo
    Les 3 Duchamps, Galerie Tokoro, Tokyo, 1984. Exhibition catalogue.
  • 1986 New York
    The Brothers Duchamp, Arnold Herstand & Company, New York, 1986. Exhibition catalogue.
  • 1987-1989 Dallas/Washington/Madrid/Florence/Tel Aviv
    A Century of Modern Sculpture: The Patsy and Raymond Nasher Collection, Dallas Museum of Art, April 5 - May 31, 1987; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., June 28, 1987 - January 3, 1988; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, April 4 - June 5, 1988; Forte Belvedere, Florence, Italy, July 8 - October 16, 1988; Tel Aviv Museum of Art, January 1 - March 31, 1989. Exhibition catalogue.
  • 1996-1997 San Francisco/New York
    A Century of Sculpture: The Nasher Collection, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, October 26, 1996 - January 12, 1997; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, February 6 - June 1, 1997. Exhibition catalogue.
  • 2003-2004 Dallas
    From Rodin to Calder: Masterworks of Modern Sculpture from the Nasher Collection, Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, October 20, 2003 - September 2004.
  • 2005-2006 Durham
    The Evolution of the Nasher Collection, Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC, October 2005 - May 2006. Exhibition catalogue.
  • 2008-2009 Dallas
    In Pursuit of the Masters: Stories from the Raymond and Patsy Nasher Collection, Dallas, Nasher Sculpture Center, September 20, 2008 – January 4, 2009. Exhibition pamphlet

Related Works

Museum's website:
Is a revision of the male figure in his Pastorale (1910), a classicized pairing of male and female, Adam and Eve.
Duchamp-Villon exhibited the plaster version of the Torso, now in the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C., at the New York Armory Show of 1913, dating it 1911 on his entry registration form (Walt Kuhn Papers, Archives of American Art; information courtesy of Judith Zilczer). In catalogs of subsequent exhibitions from 1914, 1926, and 1931 (see Exhibitions above), however, the date is invariably listed as 1910. In each of these instances, a terra-cotta version was shown, probably the one now in the Nasher collection.
Considerable confusion still exists as to the number and dating of the various casts in different materials.
In the Hirshhorn plaster, probably the earliest extant version, the legs are cut off above the knees, the surface modeling is relatively smooth, and a block is inserted under the left leg to level the figure on its attached base.
In the Nasher terra-cotta, the legs are extended below the knees and the surface, composed of pellets of clay pressed together and only partially smoothed, has more texture.
In the bronzes (three lifetime casts and a posthumous edition by Galerie Louis Carré numbered through 8/8), the composition of the legs and the surface detail of the terra-cotta are preserved, but the base is eliminated.
A photograph published by Walter Pach (1924, p. 47) records yet another plaster or terra-cotta, a version similar to the Nasher terra-cotta but without the base.
A drawing in the Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris, has been associated with this sculpture but may well be later in date (see Hamilton and Agee, 1967, fig. 28). The Torso appears more frequently than any other sculpture by Duchamp-Villon as a motif in the many drawings, paintings, and prints of Jacques Villon based upon his brother's work (Daniel Robbins, Jacques Villon, Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1976, p. 101).