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Mises Bust

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The crown jewel of all the memorabilia offered by the Mises Store.
List Price: $300.00
Price: $89.95


Mises Institute is very pleased to present the Mises Bust, a replica made from the one made during Mises's life and designed while he was sitting at his desk in his office.

The Mises Bust celebrates the great and courageous intellectual of the 20th century, memorializes him and his work in a deserving way. It is the crown jewel of all the memorabilia offered by the Mises Store.

It is designed for office or home or any public space, a fitting tribute the champion of freedom who stood against all forms of tyranny and continues to inspire a global renaissance in liberty-minded thought and action.

The Mises Institute has been thrilled for many years to have an original bust of Mises in our library. It is from Mises's own home, willed to us by Margit von Mises. It is one of only three in the world.

The Mises Institute has taken the step of commissioning copies of this bust. We found an outstanding sculptor, Gregory Johnson of Georgia, who perfectly replicated the original and produced a half size bust in cold-caste bronze. It is eight inches high by four-inches wide overall, the base is two and one half inches wide. Weight is six pounds. 

Each one is made by hand, through a process that involves many stages of production. An experienced artist first produces a clay model, beginning with a wire frame and forming it into likeness that takes shape over a period of days. Mises Institute staff traveled to watch this process taking place.

Once the clay sculpture leaves the artist's studio, it is transported to the specialist in actually making the busts. A mold is constructed around this clay with many layers of silicon are applied to the surface. A fiberglass case is then made.

Following this, the clay original is removed. The silicon then serves as a mould that replicates the detail of the original, and the fiberglass is used to produce more busts as the silicon wears out. A blend of bronze powder and epoxy resin are poured into the mould and this dries into a hard and heavy bust.

The casting is removed to reveal the bronze surfaced which is then patinated, while oils and beeswaxes are used to bring out the lustrous finish. 

The process is time consuming and results in busts that are unique, each one ever-so-slightly different from the others in coloring, patina, and shading.

The results are nothing short of spectacular.

Any owner of this treasure needs to know the history of this likeness, as reported by Margit von Mises in her memoir.

It was in 1955 that George Koether had the idea that a bust should be made of Lu for posterity. He spoke to his good friend Nelly Erickson, a sculptress, who works mostly with wood and marble. George had seen her portrait busts and he felt she would be enthusiastic about doing the work. Nelly was enthusiastic about the idea, but George told her: "There is one problem. Dr. von Mises is a very busy man; I must first get his permission and see whether he is willing to have it done."

So George invited Nelly and my husband for lunch, and Nelly told Lu that she could do the work in six one-hour sessions. Lu was horrified, and he told her he could not spare that much time. But Nelly was persistent: "I will work while you work at your desk; I won't disturb you at all." Finally he agreed, and one or two days later they started. She put her armature on rollers and pushed it around the desk, never talking to him, never disturbing him; he never really posed. But one day she had to come near to him, to take measurements with her calipers. And suddenly his face, with the beautiful complexion he always had, got dark red. It embarrassed him terribly that a strange woman should come so near to his face and touch him.

When he came home that night and told me about his "adventure," I felt I had to see the woman who stayed for hours around my husband and had to touch his face to be able to work.

So the next day I went to his office in Gallatin House to meet Nelly, and immediately we became the best of friends. I liked her; I liked the bust; but I asked her to change the hair, which she did. When the bust was finished, my husband looked at it approvingly, smiled, and said slowly, ''Yes . . . Yes." He obviously was pleased. Nelly took the bust and worked at home on the details. Then she cast it in plaster in her studio and took it to the foundry, where it was cast into bronze by the lost-wax process, the same process the old Greeks used centuries ago, the only true and good reproduction for portraits.

At a dinner party George Koether presented the bust to my husband. It has its place of honor in our living room, a fresh rose or a carnation always next to it.

It is this very bust that served as the model for the one we are now pleased to offer the public.

Click here for detailed view

8.5" high

Note 05/08/2019
: The newly cast bust do not have a marble base but has a cast base and is painted to look like the original base. The new busts will not seprate from the base like the first castings did. 


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(based on 1 review)

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by Jerry
on 12/12/2013
from Oneonta
Human Action
This is a very high quality bust of Ludwig von Mises. It now has a place on the mantle of my fireplace. 
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Dimensions 8.5" tall

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