Tobacco shop figure

Object Number: 
ca. 1877-1890
Painted and carved wood
Overall: 68 x 18 x 16 in. ( 172.7 x 45.7 x 40.6 cm )
Male in red jacket holding a package of cigars in right hand.
Gallery Label: 
This object was once part of the folk art collection of Elie Nadelman (1882-1946), the avant-garde sculptor. From 1924 to 1934, Nadelman's collection was displayed in his Museum of Folk Arts, located in the Riverdale section of the Bronx. The Historical Society purchased Nadelman's entire collection in 1937. Leaning figures were a specialty of Brooks's, hence the attribution. Although the carved wooden figures used to advertise tobacco shops usually represented stylized American Indians, this figure, from the shop of leading New York carver Thomas V. Brooks, depicts an African-American man holding a cigar.
Credit Line: 
Purchased from Elie Nadelman
The Folk Art Collection of Elie Nadelman
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group