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Praying Angel

Robert W. Davidson (American, 1904-1982)


Robert Davidson

Praying Angel, about 1927


15 x 5 ¼ x 7 inches

Bequest of Lucy M. Taggart

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Robert Davidson was born in Indianapolis, Indiana and apprenticed to his artist-father.  He studied sculpture at the John Herron Art Institute in Indianapolis, The Art Institute of Chicago, the School of American Sculpture in New York City, and the Bavarian Fine Arts Academy in Munich Germany.  Davidson’s wife, Maryetta, was an Indiana ceramics artist and also a graduate of John Herron Art Institute.  The couple moved to Saratoga Spring New York where Davidson taught art at Skidmore College.  During his career, Davidson was a member of the Indiana Artists Club and the Chicago Artist Association. 

The best know of Davidson’s early commissions are large concrete plaques that decorate the façade of Indianapolis’ Shortridge High School.  Praying Angel was one of several pieces Davidson placed in national exhibitions during the 1920s.  The bust’s symmetry, spiritual intensity, and even the limestone material recall the statuary of Gothic Cathedrals.


Artist’s file in the IMA’s Stout Library.

Object Information

Robert W. Davidson (American, 1904-1982)
creation date
about 1927
15 x 5-1/2 x 7-1/2 in.
accession number
credit line
Lucy M. Taggart Estate
American Painting and Sculpture to 1945