Overall: 69.9 x 63.6 x 24.2 cm (27 1/2 x 25 1/16 x 9 1/2 in.)
© SABAM, Brussels
Andrew R. and Martha Holden Jennings Fund 1968.191
Minnne’s sculpture explores spiritual life and inner conflict. His work focused on premodern themes and greatly influenced artists in Belgium, France, and Germany.
In 1898 the Belgian Labor Party commissioned from Minne a memorial for the Socialist leader Jean Volders. The sculptor decided that an allegory of brotherhood—consisting of two nude youths standing in a boat, anxiously trying to keep their balance in a storm—would be more appropriate than a traditional portrait of the deceased. The Labor Party disliked the design and refused to have it executed in stone. In anger, Minne destroyed his large plaster model, but a smaller study remained in his studio and was later cast in bronze. This marble version is the only carved example of the composition known to have been completed.
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