(1878 - 1942)
Abastenia St Leger Eberle was active/lived in New York, Iowa. Abastenia Eberle is known for sculpture-immigrant figure.
A sculptor of highly realistic figures, Abastenia Eberle was especially
focused on children of the Lower East Side of New York City when that
part of the city was full of immigrants and of resulting social
problems. With the eye of a photojournalist and without
sentimentality, she recorded the lives of these people including the
plight of immigrant females in a piece titled White Slave.
This sculpture was her entry in the New York 1913 Armory Show and
shocked people because it showed a girl being sold into white
slavery. Other works including The Dance of the Ghetto Children and Roller Skating showed youngsters at play, having spontaneous fun.
was born in Webster City, Iowa, and was raised primarily in Canton,
Ohio where her father was a doctor who took her on house calls
including to the home of a sculptor who inspired her
career. She first studied with Frank Vogan, a local artist.
When she was twenty, she moved with her family to Puerto Rico where she
found many subjects during the Spanish-American War in which her father
served as a physician.
In 1899, she enrolled in the Art Students
League in New York and took classes from sculptor George Barnard.
She and successful animal sculptor Anna Vaughn Hyatt shared an
apartment and collaborated on some sculpture in which Hyatt did the
animals and Eberle the human figures.
In 1908, she moved to
Manhattan and began her search on the East Side for slum-life
subjects. Eventually she moved into that neighborhood to be
closer to the people with whom she was fascinated.
She worked until age sixty when she became too ill to continue her career, and she died four years later in 1942.
Charlotte Streifer Rubinstein, American Women Artists
Donald Martin Reynolds, Masters of American Sculpture