Fruit Pré-adamite

Accession Number

Fruit Pré-adamite

Hans (Jean) Arp; Fonderie d'Art Fonderie Susse

Artist Nationality
French (culture or style)

Object Creation Date

Medium & Support

11 7/16 in x 9 13/16 in x 7 7/8 in (29.05 cm x 24.92 cm x 20 cm);11 7/16 in x 9 13/16 in x 7 7/8 in (29.05 cm x 24.92 cm x 20 cm)

Credit Line
Museum Purchase

Label copy
March 28, 2009
Fellow Surrealist artist Max Ernst characterized Arp’s work as embodying a sense of primal truth; his sculptures speak, he said, a “hypnotic language [that] takes us back to a lost paradise, to cosmic secrets, and teaches us to understand the language of the universe.” Arp himself makes reference to the idea of a lost paradise in the title of this piece, Pre-Adamic Fruit. When the biblical Adam and Eve tasted the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the Garden of Eden, their mortal sin caused the fall of mankind and they were expelled from paradise. Afterwards they knew pain, want, and shame at their nakedness. Arp’s “primal” fruit has features suggestive of both the feminine and the masculine; its androgyny may be the artist’s attempt to represent a return to innocence.

Subject matter
This sculpture is an example of Hans (Jean) Arp's interest in biomorphic abstraction. In its attention to basic, generic biomorphic shapes the piece is a kind of study of primordial organic forms, forms suggestive of all manner of life but not representing anything specifically. The title refers to a pre-genisis period, before the biblical Adam, and premordial human beings. 

Physical Description
A biomorphically abstract sculpture of bronze. Bulbous at the bottom, the shape stretches and narrows in the middle and then expands into a larger shape from which two rounded points rise.

Primary Object Classification

Primary Object Type

Collection Area
Modern and Contemporary

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biomorphic abstraction
bodies (human and animal components)
bronze (metal)
modern and contemporary art
sculpture (visual works)

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& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved

On display

UMMA Gallery Location ➜ FFW, Mezzanine ➜ M01 (Joan and Robert Tisch Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art)