Aspiration was created in response to a discussion Polasek had with another sculptor who believed that a composition should be made to present one side to the viewer, the other views being unimportant. Polasek felt that even though there is a distinct “face” to most sculptures, all sides should and can be equally interesting to the viewer. A seated female holds musical pipes in her right hand, while her raised left arm circles a cherub head. As she kisses the cherub she drinks in a breath of musical inspiration. In 1915, Aspiration won the Widener Gold Medal at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts’ annual exhibition.
After this lyrical sculpture was exhibited at the Art Institute, art critic Eleanor Jewett of the Chicago Tribune wrote: “This beautiful bronze group is one of the most perfect and exquisite conceptions in the exhibition, in either oil or sculpture. The wonderful modeling of the deer and the fawn mark it for a masterpiece. The tender union of the dryad and her wild forest companion is a beautiful achievement. …”