Visit Laumeier Sculpture with me and I will introduce you to a few of my favorite examples of monumnetal contemporary art.
Niki de Saint Phalle (1930-2002) was born in France to an aristocratic Catholic family. She taught herself to paint and rose to prominence through colorful monumental outdoor sculptures. Saint Phalle's Ricardo Cat is a highly expressive, visually bold, and playful piece.
Walking Roots by Steve Tobin (born 1957, Philadelphia, PA) an American sculptor who draws inspiration from nature. In 2005, Tobin installed what is perhaps his best known work, Trinity Root, which was originally placed at St. Paul's Chapel in Lower Manhattan, New York City. During the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, the chapel had been partly shielded from damage by an uprooted 70-year-old sycamore tree.
Falling Man/Wrapped Manscape Figure by Ernest Trova (1927-2009) is a fine example of art of which he is best known. Trova worked on his falling man idea from 1964 until his death. He invites us to consider man as an imperfect or fallen creature. Trova was for a time among the most widely acknowledged sculptors working in the United States.
Public Goddess by Judith Shea (b 1948) leverages the artist’s training as a designer at Parsons. Her works evoke human presence. Here we encounter a gold dress on a pedestal behind bars.
The lovely Aurelia Roma is made of Italian marble by Manuel Neri (b 1930), an American artist best known for figurative sculpture. Neri is a prominent figure in the San Francisco art scene for many years. He attended the California School of Fine Arts. He went on to marry another member of the second generation of the Bay Area Figurative Movement, the painter Joan Brown.
Cement Mixer by Alexandre da Cunha (b 1969), the London-based, Brazilian-born artist shows his sensibility based on a post-Duchampian alteration of found objects. Da Cunha describes his practice as being more about techniques and materiality. Cement mixer is a quintessential readymade.
La Libellule by Armand Pierre Fernandez (1928-2005) who used his first name Arman out of admiration of Vincent Van Gogh, who used his first name on his art. Arman was important in pioneered Marcel Duchamp's idea of the readymade too. Here he deconstructs a classic female form with what looks to be golden propeller blades.
Untitled 1984 by Donald Judd (1928-1994), an American artist, who rejected traditional painting and sculpture. Judd's works belong to the Minimalist movement. Judd's geometric and modular creations have been criticized for a seeming lack of content. It is this simplicity, however, that calls into question the nature of art.