Edwin W. Deming
American, 1860 – 1942
Mutual Surprise, 1907
Bronze, Brown patina
9 ⅜ H. x 8 W. x 4 ¼ D. inches
Signed on base: Copyright / 1907 / By: E W DEMING
Inscribed: ROMAN BRONZE WORKS N-Y-
Edwin Williard Deming was born in Ashland, Ohio on August 26, 1860. When he was still an infant, Deming’s family moved to western Illinois, an area that during those pre- and post-Civil War years retained a frontier character. While still in his teens, Deming traveled to Indian Territory in Oklahoma and sketched extensively. Determined to become a painter of Indians, he enrolled at the Art Students League, and then spent a year at the Académie Julian in Paris (1884-85), studying under Gustave Boulanger and Jules Lefebvre. Back in the United States, he worked the next two years painting cycloramas. In 1887 Deming first visited and painted the Apaches and Pueblos of the Southwest. His active career of painting and illustrating took him repeatedly to the lands of the Blackfoot, Crow, and Sioux, as well as to Arizona and New Mexico. After the turn of the century, Deming devoted more time to sculpture but also began work on a series of romantic murals of Indian life, which were subsequently installed in the American Museum of Natural History and the Museum of the American Indian in New York.