The Greek Slave (sculpture)

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Date: 1848

Region: North America

Subject: Nudity

Medium: Sculpture


GreekSlave.jpg

Artist: Hiram Powers

Confronting Bodies: U.S. clergymen

Date of Action: 1848

Location: The United States of America

Description of Artwork: Sculpture of female nude.

The Incident: Americans were scandalized by the fact that the slave was nude.

Results of Incident: Powers claimed that the slave was a pure Christian girl, being sold on the block somewhere like Constantinople to the heathen Turks, but protected from evil eyes by her chastity and spiritual virtues. He got the statue approved by a body of clergymen, and it was singled out for honors at the Great Crystal Palace Exhibition in London in 1851, took in $25,000 in admissions when exhibited in New York, and sold half-a-dozen full-sized replicas.

Source: NCAC