Seeing double with William Reid Dick

Recently, we sold a bronze version of one of Reid Dick’s beautiful, sensitive sculptures of young children, perhaps one of his own baby daughters. Imagine our surprise when we came across a plaster version of what looks to be the very same piece. How many Reid Dick sculptures do you stumble across in a couple of months?
Our bronze was cast with the details of one of the most celebrated firms of mould-makers in late 19th and early 20th century England, the Smith Family of Kentish Town, London. in intaglio on the back, and it is likely that the plaster was produced as a pattern by them, from which a trial mould could be made.
Although very close to the bronze, the plaster shows significant differences, and the child’s collar (and perhaps her little nose) have been abraded. The plaster is much less highly finished than the bronze, with simpler collar, hat and facial detail. Whether this means that the plaster is an early stage in the process, and the sculpture less highly worked, or whether it represents a very similar, but different, sculpture, I don’t know. Following the success of his rendition of his new-born son in 1921, Reid Dick produced sculptures of both his baby daughters during the 1920s, and it is tempting to think that these sculptures might represent one or both of them. I’ve not come across any images to confirm either way. It might have to wait for a research visit to the Tate Archive, which holds Reid Dick’s papers.
Unless someone else has any ideas….Reid-Dick-plaster-3Reid-Dick

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