Quo Vadis. Cast bronze, with a dark brown patina. 558x235x130 mm; 22x9 1/2x5 1/8 inches. Incised artist's signature on the base, rear edge.
Provenance: acquired directly from the artist, Louis Hecht, New York; thence by descent, Philip H. Rubin, New York; private collection, New York (2013). Circa 1951.
Quo Vadis or "Where are you going?" in Latin was first a 1895 popular historical novel written by Henryk Sienkiewicz in Polish entitled Quo Vadis: A Narrative of the Time of Nero. Barthé was apparently inspired by actor Robert Taylor's masculine presence and performance as Nero in the same-titled 1951 Hollywood movie adaptation. This muscular bronze displays a "Charles Atlas-like" physique. We have found no other examples of this scarce and fine cast.