In 1922 sculptor Malvina Hoffman completed three bronze portrait busts of legendary pianist and statesman Ignacy Jan Paderewski. She titled these "Paderewski the Man," "Paderewski the Artist," and "Paderewski the Statesman."
The three sculptures were first exhibited at New York’s Knoedler Gallery in 1923, an opening attended by Paderewski himself. These days, Paderewski the Man resides in the collection of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, while Paderewski the Artist holds court at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In his later years, Ignacy Jan Paderewski gave concerts in support of the Polish Relief Fund
Paderewski the Statesman sells as Lot 101 in Leslie Hindman Auctioneers’ 20th Century Decorative Arts sale. The piece stands 76 inches tall, is signed and dated on the back, and is expected to bring between $10,000-15,000.
Paderewski and Hoffman developed a strong bond over the ensuing years. Paderewski lent the artist significant moral support, so much so that she dedicated her book Heads and Tales of Many Lands to the great man. Said Hoffman: “The magical influence of his friendship at these dangerous curves of my existence could never be realized by him."
Paderewski the Statesman (left), and sculptor Malvina Hoffman