This carved wooden toy is rendered with the simplification of form, almost to the point of abstraction, that made folk art so appealing in the 1920s and 1930s to contemporary artists and collectors. Indeed, this horse could almost be taken for a work by Elie Nadelman, who was himself a collector of folk art. Lugs carved under the hooves suggest that it was mounted on a base, presumably with wheels, so that it could be towed.

RELATED EXAMPLES: A larger one from the Dorothy C. Miller (Mrs. Holger Cahill) Collection was exhibited in the 'American Folk Sculpture” show, Newark Museum, Newark, New Jersey, 1931-32 (Jeffers 1995, p. 333, pi. XIII).

Book excerpt: Warren, David B., Michael K. Brown, Elizabeth Ann Coleman, and Emily Ballew Neff. American Decorative Arts and Paintings in the Bayou Bend Collection. Houston: Princeton Univ. Press, 1998.


Cataloguing data may change with further research.

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Maker
American
Title
Toy Horse
Date
c. 1850–1900
Medium
Spruce and flax
Dimensions
(With base): 13 1/2 × 13 1/2 × 4 in. (34.3 × 34.3 × 10.2 cm) (Without base): 12 × 12 3/4 × 3 1/8 in. (30.5 × 32.4 × 7.9 cm)
Credit Line

The Bayou Bend Collection, gift of Miss Ima Hogg

Current Location
Not on view
Accession Number
B.55.7
Classification
Dolls, Toys & Games
Provenance

Acquired by Miss Hogg from the American Folk Art Gallery, New York, NY, March 10, 1955