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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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look where you would the building charmed the eye.    Visitors,
though in no great number, mostly country folk all about.
The Sculpture first attracts attention.    Italian works, in white
marble.     A nude Italian girl, dormant sensuality the prevailing
sentiment, figure too life-like to be of the higher order of art.
 Eve after the Fall,  (Austrian), I think, exquisite.  A sweet
sorrowful startled face, and delicious figure, hair rich and clus-
tering falling down the fair smooth back.       Serpent attacking
and attacked, by lions,   don t think much of  t.      But turn
to Kiss s  Amazon  in bronze.           Oh the divine beauty of tht
wrought conception.    That brave, beautiful face, with
wild hair flowing back from the Phrygian cap surmounting it,
that noble, womanly, and yet heroic figure, so perfect in its
development and fulness; the startled and agonized
horse,  and the savage beast assailing him!          In all the casts,
statuettes and pictures I have seen, the impression conveyed is that
the Amazon will be overpowered, and the sentiment of pain 
is left with you.       But not so with the real work.   You
know that the tiger will fall death-stricken through eyeball
and brain, and have no fear for that glorious, indignant
by but assured heroine.        This work is the finest in the
building, and you leave thinking so.       Honor to Sculptor Kiss.
He has another exquisite figure in white marble.    A re-
cumbent sylph, lying half backwards, with such a sweet
pure face, and deliciously curved mouth you wonder whether
he didn t kiss it on completion.     /        There s a little Italian
girl threading a needle, toes turned in and eyes intent, so
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Six: page thirty-four
Description:Describes a visit to the Crystal palace in New York, and describes the sculptures he saw there.
Date:1853-08-02
Subject:Crystal Palace (New York, N.Y.); Gunn, Thomas Butler; Kiss; Sculpture
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-02-02

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Six
Description:Includes descriptions of Gunn's writing and drawing work in New York, a visit to the Catskill Mountains, attending the wedding of his friend Charles Damoreau (Brown), a visit to the Crystal Palace in New York, his friend Lotty's difficult marriage to John Whytal, a sailing trip around Lake Superior, a visit to Mackinac Island in Michigan, a visit to Mammoth Cave in Kentucky, and a journey by horseback from Kentucky to Louisiana with friends.
Subject:African Americans; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Marriage; Native Americans; Publishers and publishing; Slavery; Travel; Women
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Michigan; Wisconsin; Ohio; Kentucky; Mississippi; Alabama; Louisiana
Note:Thomas Butler Gunn was born February 15, 1826, in Banbury, England, and came to New York in 1849. During the Civil War he worked as a correspondent for the New York Tribune and the New York Evening Post. He returned to England in 1863, and died in Birmingham in April 1903. The collection includes twenty-one volumes of his diaries, including newspaper clippings, letters, photographs, sketches, and various other items inserted by Gunn. Diary entries date from July 7, 1849, to April 7, 1863, and include his experiences with the New York publishing and literary world, his descriptions of boarding houses, his travels throughout the United States, and his experiences traveling with the Federal army as a Civil War correspondent.
Publisher:Missouri History Museum
Rights:Copyright 2011 Missouri History Museum.
Source:Page images, transcriptions, and metadata of the Thomas Butler Gunn diaries have been provided by the Missouri History Museum.