Two young men, their legs apart, are standing opposite one another on a boat, holding on to each other’s forearms to prevent them from losing their balance. Engaged in wordless conversation, they make sure they remain standing. Their heads nestled together, the two figures seem to need, console and support one another in their togetherness. The lean bodies are a hallmark of the Belgian sculptor and draftsman George Minne’s (1866–1941) oeuvre. The sculpture is a draft for his first public commission. In 1896 he won the competition held by the Parti Ouvrier (labor party) to create a monument to the deceased Socialist leader Jean Volders (1855–1896). The committee eventually withdrew the commission in late 1898 due to the long period of execution and uncertainty as to the appropriateness of this type of work for a cemetery. In 1909 Minne took up work on this group of figures once more. There are versions of this sculpture executed in plaster, bronze and marble.