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Fine Art

'The Wave' 1910 Bronze Sculpture by Charles Cary Rumsey

 Much has been written about Rumsey. (1879-1922)


In recent years, there have been shows of his work at the Charles Cary Rumsey Gallery for Sculpture at the Penney Burchfield Center in Buffalo, NY.

During his lifetime, his work was included in exhibits at major museums and at the Armory Show in NY in 1913, the exhibition credited with the first major introduction of modern art to America.

The lasting impression is that Rumsey created sculpture usually in bronze that is as meaningful and beautiful today as it was a century ago.

As an 8 goal polo player (10 is the highest ranking) and a Captain in the Calvary in 1917-1918 in France, he had a passion for horses which contributed to his recognized talent in sculpting animals and humans. 

His figurative or representational art tells a story that one still understands today.

He was committed to his art, serving a two year apprenticeship in Paris at age 14 studying with Paul Weyland Bartlett, one of the most prominent American sculptures abroad.

While at Harvard ’02, he studied during summers at the School at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

Upon graduation, he enrolled at the Julian and Colarossi Academies in Paris where his chief adviser was Emmanuel Fremier (1824-1910).

Fremier’s famous public sculptures include the gilded Fame with Pegasus that adorns the northeastern pylon of the Pont Alexandre III, the beautiful bridge in Paris crossing the Seine connecting the Eiffel Tower quarter with the Champs-Elysees quarter. 

Rumsey returned to the US and won important public commissions with the architectural firm that built the New York Public Library and Manhattan Bridge.

Meeting in 1909, he and Mary Harriman were married in 1910.

As an entering Barnard College student and a 19 year old debutante in 1901, Mary thought her class of 85 women should work to improve NYC communities.

Mary organized the Junior League of the New York College Settlement, from which grew the National Association of Junior Leagues.     

The Wave brings together three powerful horses and skillful riders in a struggle showing the power of the horses and the ability of the men to stay with them.

This monumental sculpture was gifted to Mr & Mrs Charles Cary in 1947 by the Rumsey family as their wedding present.

More recently, since 1987, it has been on long term loan/ exhibit at the Penney Burchfield Art Center.  

There may be an opportunity to have several castings made.

If interested in learning more about Rumsey, the possibility of owning a posthumous casting or this actual piece, please contact us for more info.  

Bronze, 39.25"H x 25.5"W x 28.75"D