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Maker(s):Orloff, Chana
Culture:Israeli and French, born Ukraine, (1888-1968)
Title:Maria Lani (Shepherdess)
Date Made:1928 model
Type:Sculpture
Materials:Cast bronze
Place Made:Europe; France
Measurements:Overall: 18 1/4 in x 7 1/2 in x 10 1/2 in; 46.4 cm x 19 cm x 26.7 cm; Base: 5 7/8 in x 5 7/8 in x 5 7/8 in; 14.9 cm x 14.9 cm x 14.9 cm
Narrative Inscription:  INSCRIPTION: lower back of neck: Chana Orloff--Alexis Rudier, Fondeur, Paris.
Accession Number:  MH 1956.3.M.OI
Credit Line:Gift of Mrs. Randall Chadwick
Museum Collection:  Mount Holyoke College Art Museum
mh_1956_3_m_oi_v1.jpg

Currently on view

Description:
Head of a woman with abstract features.

Label Text:
In 1928 Maria Lani, a young actress, arrived in Paris from Berlin and devised an elaborate scheme. A charismatic figure, she convinced fifty-nine eminent artists to make her portraits, which she claimed were to be featured in a movie. While the film was never produced, the portraits were exhibited in the United States and Europe. This bust by Chana Orloff, made as part of that campaign, exploits Lani’s ever-changing persona as noted by her contemporaries. A careful look reveals that she is wearing a hairnet, probably in preparation for a wig—a detail that alludes to Lani as a player of roles. Orloff, a member of the School of Paris, the vibrant artistic avant-garde that flourished at the Montparnasse district of Paris, rose to prominence as a portraitist of the Parisian elite in the 1920s.

-Pavithra Devarajan (Class of 2019), University of Massachussetts Amherst
A Very Long Engagement: Nineteenth-Century Sculpture and Its Afterlives (July 29, 2017 - May 27, 2018)

Tags:
Jewish; women; women artists; sculpture; faces; busts

Link to share this object record:
https://museums.fivecolleges.edu/detail.php?t=objects&type=ext&id_number=MH+1956.3.M.OI

Research on objects in the collections, including provenance, is ongoing and may be incomplete. If you have additional information or would like to learn more about a particular object, please email fc-museums-web@fivecolleges.edu.

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