The Spirit of Humanity, 1906

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Robert Reid produced this drawing in response to the staggering human tragedy of the Great San Francisco Earthquake of April 18, 1906, a natural disaster that killed more than 3,000 and leveled much of the city. A founding member of the Ten American Painters, Reid commonly created works that featured figurative allegories such as this personification of the Spirit of Humanity, portrayed here as a benevolent goddess cradling a sleeping infant while comforting a distraught mother. Reid's drawing was first exhibited in New York as part of an organized relief effort to benefit the survivors of the devastating earthquake and subsequent fires.

The Spirit of Humanity
Artist Life
1862 - 1929
Accession Number
The artist, donated to the California Artists' Relief Committee, San Francisco auction (in New York') for San Francisco earthquake relief , sold for $250 to William Clausen (William Clausen Galleries), New York. (Bonham's San Francisco, Dec. 10, 1997). (Childs Gallery, Boston, sold to MIA, 1998)
Curator Approved

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