Heinz Warneke

Last updated
Heinz Warneke Heinz Warneke photograph.jpg
Heinz Warneke

Heinz Warneke (June 30, 1895 – 1983) American sculptor, best remembered as an animalier. His "role in the direct carving movement assured him a place in the annals of Twentieth Century American sculpture." [1] In 1935 Heinz received the Widener Gold Medal for his sculpture Wild Boars.

Animalier person who creates artworks featuring animals

An animalier is an artist, mainly from the 19th century, who specializes in, or is known for, skill in the realistic portrayal of animals. "Animal painter" is the more general term for earlier artists. Although the work may be in any genre or format, the term is most often applied to sculptors and painters.

The George D. Widener Memorial Gold Medal was a prestigious sculpture prize awarded by the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1913 to 1968. Established in 1912, it recognized the "most meritorious work of Sculpture modeled by an American citizen and shown in the Annual Exhibition." PAFA's annual exhibitions were open to all American sculptors, but an individual could be awarded the medal only once. Sculptors Paul Manship, Albin Polasek, Malvina Hoffman, Carl Paul Jennewein, Anna Hyatt Huntington, William Zorach and Leonard Baskin were among its recipients.



The artist was born Heinrich Johann Dietrich Warneke in Hagen bei Leeste, a small village near Bremen, Germany and pursued his art studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin. [2] There his teachers included Karl Blossfeldt. [3]

Kunstgewerbemuseum Berlin museum of Decorative Arts in Berlin

The Kunstgewerbemuseum, or Museum of Decorative Arts, is an internationally important museum of the decorative arts in Berlin, Germany, part of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. The collection is split between the Kunstgewerbemuseum building at the Kulturforum (52.5097°N 13.3674°E) and Köpenick Palace (52.4439°N 13.5728°E).

Karl Blossfeldt German photographer, sculptor and teacher

Karl Blossfeldt was a German photographer, sculptor, teacher, and artist who worked in Berlin, Germany. He is best known for his close-up photographs of plants and living things, published in 1929 as Urformen der Kunst. He was inspired, as was his father, by nature and the ways in which plants grow. He believed that 'the plant must be valued as a totally artistic and architectural structure.'

During World War I, Warneke was a member of the German Monuments Commission but later moved to New York in 1923. [4] He spent the years 1927–1932 in Paris creating a social realism, art-deco and primitivism sculptural style. When he returned to the United States, Warneke undertook multiple commissions for the Works Progress Administration. [4]

Works Progress Administration largest and most ambitious United States federal government New Deal agency

The Works Progress Administration was an American New Deal agency, employing millions of job-seekers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads. It was established on May 6, 1935, by Executive Order 7034. In a much smaller project, Federal Project Number One, the WPA employed musicians, artists, writers, actors and directors in large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects. The four projects dedicated to these were: the Federal Writers’ Project (FWP), the Historical Records Survey (HRS), the Federal Theatre Project (FTP), the Federal Music Project (FMP), and the Federal Art Project (FAP). In the Historical Records Survey, for instance, many former slaves in the South were interviewed; these documents are of great importance for American history. Theater and music groups toured throughout America, and gave more than 225,000 performances. Archaeological investigations under the WPA were influential in the rediscovery of pre-Columbian Native American cultures, and the development of professional archaeology in the US.

He shared his skills with young art students by teaching sculpture at various institutions. From 1943 to 1968, Warneke taught in Washington, D.C. at the George Washington University and the Corcoran School of Art. [5]

George Washington University university in Washington, D.C.

The George Washington University is a private research university in Washington, D.C. It was chartered in 1821 by an act of the United States Congress.

Warneke died in Connecticut in 1983. [4]

Selected works

Smithsonian American Art Museum Art museum, Design/Textile Museum, Heritage Museum in Washington, D.C.

The Smithsonian American Art Museum is a museum in Washington, D.C., part of the Smithsonian Institution. Together with its branch museum, the Renwick Gallery, SAAM holds one of the world's largest and most inclusive collections of art, from the colonial period to the present, made in the United States. The museum has more than 7,000 artists represented in the collection. Most exhibitions take place in the museum's main building, the old Patent Office Building, while craft-focused exhibitions are shown in the Renwick Gallery.

Fairmount Park largest municipal park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and the historic name for a group of parks located throughout the city

Fairmount Park is the largest municipal park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and the historic name for a group of parks located throughout the city. Fairmount Park consists of two park sections named East Park and West Park, divided by the Schuylkill River, with the two sections together totalling 2,052 acres (830 ha). Management of Fairmount Park and the entire citywide park system is overseen by Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, a city department created in 2010 from the merger of the Fairmount Park Commission and the Department of Recreation.

Harlem River Houses Public housing development in Manhattan

The Harlem River Houses is a New York City Housing Authority public housing complex located between West 151st and West 153rd Streets and between Macombs Place and the Harlem River Drive in the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. The complex, which covers 9 acres (3.6 ha), was built in 1936-37 and opened in October 1937 – one of the first two housing projects in the city funded by the Federal government – with the goal of providing quality housing for working-class African Americans. It has 574 apartments.

<i>Nittany Lion Shrine</i>

The Nittany Lion Shrine is a large mountain lion sculpture carved by Heinz Warneke located at the University Park campus of the Pennsylvania State University.

Pennsylvania State University Public university with multiple campuses in Pennsylvania, United States

The Pennsylvania State University is a state-related, land-grant, doctoral university with campuses and facilities throughout Pennsylvania. Founded in 1855 as the Farmers’ High School of Pennsylvania, and later known as the University of State College, Penn State conducts teaching, research, and public service. Its instructional mission includes undergraduate, graduate, professional and continuing education offered through resident instruction and online delivery. Its University Park campus, the flagship campus, lies within the Borough of State College and College Township. It has two law schools: Penn State Law, on the school's University Park campus, and Dickinson Law, located in Carlisle, 90 miles south of State College. The College of Medicine is located in Hershey. Penn State has another 19 commonwealth campuses and 5 special mission campuses located across the state. Penn State has been labeled one of the "Public Ivies," a publicly funded university considered as providing a quality of education comparable to those of the Ivy League.

Related Research Articles

George Grey Barnard American artist

George Grey Barnard, often written George Gray Barnard, was an American sculptor who trained in Paris. He is especially noted for his heroic sized Struggle of the Two Natures in Man at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, his twin sculpture groups at the Pennsylvania State Capitol, and his Lincoln statue in Cincinnati, Ohio. His major works are largely symbolical in character. His personal collection of Medieval architectural fragments forms a core part of The Cloisters in New York City.

William Rush U.S. neoclassical sculptor from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

William Rush was a U.S. neoclassical sculptor from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is considered the first major American sculptor. Rush was born in Philadelphia, the fourth child of Joseph Rush, a ship's carpenter, and first wife, Rebecca Lincoln. As a teenager, he apprenticed three years with woodcarver Edward Cutbush, and soon surpassed his master in the art of carving of ships' figureheads in wood. He saw military service during the American Revolution, as an officer in the militia. He opened his own wood carving business, and was in great demand when the U.S. Navy began building ships on Philadelphia. Later in life, he took up sculpture. Rush was one of the founders of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and taught sculpture there. He was also active in local politics, serving on the Philadelphia City Council for two decades. Rush died in Philadelphia in 1833, and is buried at The Woodlands (Philadelphia).

Alexander Stirling Calder American artist

Alexander Stirling Calder was an American sculptor and teacher. He was the son of sculptor Alexander Milne Calder and the father of sculptor Alexander (Sandy) Calder. His best-known works are George Washington as President on the Washington Square Arch in New York City, the Swann Memorial Fountain in Philadelphia, and the Leif Eriksson Memorial in Reykjavík, Iceland.

Charles Grafly American artist

Charles Allan Grafly, Jr. was an American sculptor and teacher.

Cyrus Edwin Dallin American sculptor

Cyrus Edwin Dallin was an American sculptor best known for his depictions of Native Americans. He created more than 260 works, including the equestrian statue of Paul Revere in Boston, Massachusetts; the Angel Moroni atop Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah; and his most famous work, Appeal to the Great Spirit, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. He was also an Olympic archer.

William Rudolf ODonovan American sculptor

William Rudolf O'Donovan was an American sculptor.

Walker Hancock American artist

Walker Kirtland Hancock was an American sculptor and teacher. He created notable monumental sculptures, including the Pennsylvania Railroad World War II Memorial (1950–52) at 30th Street Station in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the World War I Soldiers' Memorial (1936–38) in St. Louis, Missouri. He made major additions to the National Cathedral in Washington, DC, including Christ in Majesty (1972), the bas relief over the High Altar. Works by him are at the United States Military Academy, the Library of Congress, the United States Supreme Court Building, and the United States Capitol.

Joseph A. Bailly French-born American sculptor

Joseph Alexis Bailly was a French-born American sculptor who spent most of his career in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He taught briefly at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, which has a collection of his sculpture. His most famous work is the statue of George Washington in front of Independence Hall.

Brenda Putnam American artist

Brenda Putnam was a noted American sculptor, teacher and author.

Smith Memorial Arch

Smith Memorial Arch is an American Civil War monument at South Concourse and Lansdowne Drive in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Built on the former grounds of the 1876 Centennial Exposition, it serves as a gateway to West Fairmount Park. The Memorial consists of two colossal columns supported by curving, neo-Baroque arches, and adorned with 13 individual portrait sculptures ; two eagles standing on globes; and architectural reliefs of 8 allegorical figures.

John Gregory (sculptor) American artist

John Clements Gregory was an American sculptor.

Edmond Thomas Quinn American scsulptor and painter

Edmond Thomas Quinn was an American sculptor and painter. He is best known for his bronze statue of Edwin Booth as Hamlet, which stands at the center of Gramercy Park in New York City. His larger-than-lifesize bronze bust of Victor Herbert stands near The Pond in Central Park, New York City.

<i>George Washington</i> (Houdon) statue by French sculptor Jean-Antoine Houdon

George Washington is a statue by French sculptor Jean-Antoine Houdon from the late 18th century. Based on a life mask and other measurements of George Washington taken by Houdon, it is considered one of the most accurate depictions of the subject. The original sculpture is located in the rotunda of the Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, Virginia, and has been copied extensively.

John J. Boyle American sculptor

John J. Boyle was an American sculptor.

John Frazee (sculptor) American architect (1790-1852)

John Frazee was an American sculptor and architect. The Smithsonian has a collection of many of his sculptures as well as paintings of Frazee by other artists including Asher B. Durand and Henry Colton Shumway

Hélène Sardeau

Hélène Sardeau was an American sculptor, born in Antwerp, who moved with her family to the United States when she was about 14 years old.

Emily Clayton Bishop

Emily Clayton Bishop was an American prize-winning sculptor. Although she died at a young age, her works in bronze and plaster are found in museum collections such as the Smithsonian American Art Museum and in shows such as Modern Women at PAFA (2013). Her childhood home, the Emily Clayton Bishop house, is a Maryland State historic site.


  1. Cunningham, Mary Mullen, Heinz Warneke (1895–1983): A Sculptor First and Last, University of Delaware, Newark, DE, 1994 p. 13
  2. McGlauflin, Alice Coe, editor, Who's Who in American Art: Volume II, 1938–1939, The American Federation of Arts, Inc., Washington D.C., 1937. p. 548
  3. Cunningham, Mary Mullen, Heinz Warneke (1895–1983): A Sculptor First and Last, University of Delaware, Newark, DE, 1994 p.22
  4. 1 2 3 "Heinz Warneke Papers". Syracuse University Libraries. Retrieved February 24, 2015.
  5. "Heinz Warneke". National Museum of American Art. Retrieved February 24, 2015.
  6. "Wild Boars". Smithsonian American Art Museum.
  7. Prodigal Son from SIRIS.
  8. The Immigrant from SIRIS.
  9. Bears Playing from SIRIS.
  10. Nittany Lion from SIRIS.
  11. African Elephant and Calf from SIRIS.
  12. "Elegance by Heinz Warneke / American Art" . Retrieved 21 October 2016.
  13. "Express Mail Carrier by Heinz Warneke / American Art" . Retrieved 21 October 2016.