The Pursuit of Happiness by Isidore Konti
An allegory of “The Pursuit of Happiness” A wonderful ‘fluid’ bronze statue depicting a nude young man pursuing a classically draped woman, her long robes flowing in the wind, reminiscent of the style of Rodin; the bronze with dark brown patina; signed Konti, with foundry mark for the Roman Bronze Works N.Y.
Isidore Konti (1862-1938) was a Vienna-born sculptor. He began formal art studies at the age of 16 when he entered the Imperial Academy in Vienna where he studied under Edmund von Hellmer. In 1886 he won a scholarship that allowed him to study in Rome for two years. While there he developed a love of Renaissance art that was to affect the nature of his mature sculpture. Upon returning to Austria, Konti worked as an architectural modeler.
In 1890, Konti emigrated to America, going straight to Chicago where he began working on sculptural decorations for the World’s Columbian Exposition. When the work there was completed, he moved to New York City and commenced working as an assistant for fellow Austrian expatriate Karl Bitter. Honing his skills on works for the exposition in Buffalo, New York, in 1900, St. Louis Missouri in 1904 and for the Panama Pacific Exposition in San Francisco in 1915, Konti’s skills as a modeler kept him in much demand. In 1906 he was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member and became a full Academician in 1909.
Konti died in Yonkers, New York on January 11, 1938 and while his smaller works such ads this bronze are rare, he left his signature on many monuments and fountains all over his adopted home turf of Yonkers New York for sure but also in other US States. Some of this most notable works include the Tympanum, Grace Chapel, New York City 1894; Three Graces Hotel Astor, New York City, 1907; Gainsborough Studio Building, New York City, 1908; Statues of Justinian and Alfred the Great, Cuyahoga County Courthouse, Cleveland, Ohio, 1910; McKinley Memorial, Yonkers, New York 1906; Mother & Child: the Bath, fountain in Katonah, New York, c. 1911; The Meeting of Air and Water, Gumbel Memorial Fountain, Audubon Park, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1919: Hyams Memorial Fountain, Carousel Gardens Amusement Park, New Orleans, Louisiana, 1921: Yonkers World War I Memorial, Yonkers, NY, 1922; Spanish – American War Memorial, Yonkers, New York, 1924; Lincoln Monument, Lincoln Park, Yonkers, New York, 1929.
Dimensions: 21″H x 21″W x 8″D