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David Smith did not allow a preconceived image to dictate his sculpture, rather, he let his open-form works unfold during their construction. Of Egyptian Barnyard, Smith wrote that he had "no special motivation except ‘sculpture.'" He chose the title for this work after it was completed. Egyptian Barnyard is the first silver casting that Smith created for himself and displayed at home.
Smith was among the first American artists to sculpt with industrial metals and techniques. Widely associated with Abstract Expressionism, Smith considered his raw materials and forceful welding process to be primary aspects of his work. In this sculpture, the artist welded and soldered sterling silver just as he would with iron or steel, not treating it as a precious metal.