Max Kalish (American, 1891-1945) Bronze

The Steel Rougher

ca. 1926

signed on base

ht. 13.5, wd. 9.5, dp. 4 in. 


One of the most celebrated members of the Cleveland School, Max Kalish studied at the Cleveland School of Art, the National Academy of Design, and exhibited his work at the Paris Salon. He divided his time between Paris and Cleveland, before moving his studio to New York City in 1932. His portrayals of the heroic laborer, especially the steel worker of the Rust Belt, earned him particular notoriety and are among many museum collections including the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Smithsonian Museum of American Art, and the Detroit Institute of Art. The Steel Rougher was exhibited at the 1926 Cleveland Museum of Art May Show and is illustrated in Kalish's monograph, "Labor Sculpture" (1938).

Exhibition photo courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Art archives. 

Provenance:Exhibited: Eighth Annual Exhibition of work by Cleveland Artists and Craftsmen (May Show), Cleveland Museum of Art, 1926; Korner & Wood Galleries, Cleveland, 1926; National Museum of Industrial History, Bethlehem, PA, 2016. Published: Max Kalish, "Labor Sculpture," New York: 1938, pl. 25.


Recently cleaned and waxed. 

The tool extending beyond the figure's left hand was recently added by an art restoration firm.

Estimate: $12,000 - $18,000
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium


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