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Schwarz, Rudolph The Scout, No Date


Rudolph Schwarz was born in Vienna and studied there at the Academy of Fine Arts. Around 1888 he went to Germany, where he executed important works in stone. His dream of coming to America was fulfilled in 1897 when he accompanied Bruno Schmitz of Germany to Indianapolis. Schmitz had been selected in a worldwide search for an architect for the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument on the Circle.

In a later competition to complete the monument, Schwarz won over many other sculptors and received the commission for several of the statues, including the War and Peace groupings. He executed many other statues throughout the state, including the statue of Governor Oliver P. Morton at the east entrance of the State House.

He lived the rest of his life in Indianapolis with his family, had a studio on the south side of the city, and taught modeling classes at Herron Art Institute. Although he revived the art of wax casting and owned a factory devoted to it, the method frequently resulted in imperfections and Schwarz often underbid his jobs, so he lived in poverty.

  • The Scout, n.d.
  • 14′ tall
  • Indiana War Memorials commission
  • Keywords: sculpture, casts, bronze
  • Subjects: people, men, military, weapons, uniforms, hats, hands

The Scout is one of four statues representing branches of the military: artillery and navy are on the north side; infantry and cavalry (including The Scout) are on the south. Figures in the sculptures are depicted in regulation uniforms. Schwarz has achieved a convincing portrayal of a scout by having his left arm raised as if to shade his eyes while peering into the distance. A lifelike quality has been achieved by carving the legs in a walking position rather than placing them together in what would be a more static pose. At the time this photo was taken, the saber that should be hanging at the scout’s left was missing, but the piece has since been restored.

Some Points To Consider

  • Ask students to describe the ways Schwarz showed movement in this sculpture. How did he solve the problem of balance? (Art 4.3.1)
  • Ask: How did Schwarz depict the scout? What did a military scout do? What is this scout doing? (Art 4.3.2)

Suggested Activities for Classroom Follow-Up

  • Allow class time for students to research any carved stone monuments in your area. Take a field trip to examine them in person.