'Israfel', Jacob Epstein
The model for this bust was Sunita, whose real name was Amina Peerbhoy. It was first exhibited at London’s Leicester Galleries in 1931. Epstein wrote of it:
“Taken from an Indian model but it is purely Greek in feeling (or at any rate seems to me to be so).”
Israfel, Israfeel or Israfil was the Archangel of Music in the Koran and is the subject of a poem, 'Israfel', by Edgar Allen Poe of 1831. At the time this bust was purchased the Curator of the Walker Art Gallery was Frank Lambert, who knew the artist.
Bronze, modelled in 1930
Purchased from the artist in 1940
Accession Number WAG758
'Israfel', Edgar Allen Poe