Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The beautiful males of Ian Rank-Broadley

Sir Ian Rank-Broadley, born in Surrey (England) in 1952, is one of the few successful living sculptors who predominantly sculpts the male figure, and the male nude. Being monumental groups, portraits, small medals, reliefs or attractive life size bodies, he masters the anatomy & the movement, giving you the real envy to touch them.

As he declares himself in his website : "'The choice of the male figure / nude as a dominant motif was made quite early when I realised that the female nude had, to a large extent, been robbed of its power by the commercial world of advertising, whereas the male nude still retained a power that could excite, grab attention and shock. The reaction of the spectator to the male figure was stronger, whether out of competition, fear or embarrassment. It proved to be a potent image. For me, the sculptor, this fact reinforced the work with a greater resonance and meaning.''

Many of Ian Rank-Broadley sculptures have a classical influence, like his Heroic Torso and fragments etc. The towel on the work above gives somewhat a more contemporary look, which I like a lot as well.

Below is his large sculpture in bronze 'Towards Another'  life size.
Towards Another - Bronze

Towards Another - Bronze

And here some of his reliefs (you can read the inspiration of these on the sculptor's website).
Berlin Boy 1
Berlin Boy 2
A private collection holds this Heroic Male Torso. More details about the lizzard in his website!

Other versions.

One of Ian Rank-Broadley major projects is the Armed Forces Memorial, at the National Memorial Arboretum at Alrewas, near Lichfield, in Staffordshire. Mythology (with Achilles & Patrocle) and symbolic (sun rays) play a role in these two groups of sculptures 'The Stretchers Bearers' and 'The Gates'. See the full story, more pictures and description in the link at the end of this post under 'Sources'.

The Stretchers - detail

The Sculptor - detail

Photo from les.shutterchance.com
The Gates - detail

I encourage you to visit his website to get a full idea of his talent and discover his other sculptures, like the acrobat, the swimmer, and his numerous portraits and medals (see also his coin with the effigy of H.M. Queen Elizabeth II, and the medal 'Prisoner of Conscience').

Ian Rank-Broadley website 
Armed Forces Memorial 
Les Shutterchance 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

The sensual sculpture of Donal Hord

Thanks to art collectors, Richard Dyson (who died in 2013) and his partner, Robert Roberson (1999), the San Diego History Center received eight major sculptures from Donal Hord (1902-1966), famous sculptor of San Diego, California.
Dyson and his partner ran a flower shop in La Mesa and were early collectors of Hord’s work.

Catalog of 1999 show at San Diego History Center
Donal Hord 'Man and the wheel' or 'Wheel of Industry' or 'Man and the machine' 1934
''Donal Hord was considered one of the most preeminent American sculptors by many in the national and local art community during the early to mid-20th century. At the time Hord was the only local artist to become a full Academician of the National Academy of Design and a Fellow of the National Sculpture Society.''
Donal Hord 'Morning'
Donal Hord 'Young bather' 1955

''Hord preferred Direct Carving, a process which involves only the carver, the tools, and the medium and shuns the use of working from a drawing. The carver takes inspiration from the medium’s lines and angles, allowing the material to dictate the form and represents a return to the direct approach used in primitive art. Hord worked mainly with hard materials like jade, onyx, and granite in stone and rosewood, mahogany, and lignum vitae in woods.''

Donal Hord 'Kneeling young man'

Picture below shows Donal Hord in 1956 working on the model of his sculpture Angel of Peace. The real-life sculpture (shown in the next 2 photos) is located at the American Cemetery at Henri-Chapelle, Belgium. Photo of Donal Hord is from San Diego History Center.

Some other sculptures from Donal Hord still focussed on the male body.

Donal Hord 'Siesta'

Donal Hord 'Man with a mask'
Donal Hord 'Reclining male nude' in plaster

Donal Hord 'Thunder'
Hord also designed some medals figuring males, as seen below.


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Arthur Volkmann

Arthur Volkmann, another German sculptor, was born in Leipzig on August 28, 1851, and had interest for art very early.

He started studying sculpture at 17, during 5 years, then accomplished his military service, before to further study in Germany, and he also got a scholarship allowing him to go to Italy, in Rome.

Volkmann was strongly influenced by the painter Hans von Marees who he admired.  Marees painted a lot of scenes with male nudes, sometimes a personal interpretation of mythology like paintings of Ganymede, or Achille. Volkmann tried to apply Marees painting approach to his sculpture work, including coloring some of his marbles.
Volkmann began to paint as well later in his life.

At the end, almost blind, he wrote his memoirs, and some texts to explain his paintings and Marees art vision. He died aged 90.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Jean Thiancourt

Jean Thiancourt is a French sculptor, as talented as he is discreet. He initiated a gigantic project, to sculpt the 20 Ignudi from Michel Angelo's Sixtine Chapel. This may remind you as well Patrick Poivre de la Freta similar project. The size of Jean Thiancourt Ignudi sculptures is larger though.


Among the other sculptures from Jean Thiancourt subjectively selected for this blog, there is this one, part of a serie of 3 characters, seated in various areas of the Port-sur-Saone town in France. Each character has a different ethnic origin (African, European, and Asian). They symbolize the fraternity and tolerance that should exist between all people on earth.

And this one that I like also.

If you want to see his other sculptures, I invite you to browse his blog and website, mentioned below.

Jean Thiancourt blog

Jean Thiancourt Ignudi's blog

Artisho gallery

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Wilfred Fitzenreiter

To start this December month, here is the 'Three girls and a boy' sculpture made by Wilfred Fitzenreiter.  It is located in Germany, opposite the Berlin Cathedral, on the bank of the river Spree next to the DDR Museum.

Wilfred Fitzenreiter  (1932 - 2008) was a modern German sculptor, who lived in Berlin. He studied sculpture, worked as a freelance in Berlin, was a teacher at the Art Academy of Berlin. 

This video link allows you to see the variety of bas-reliefs and interesting medals he did, with amazing characters, couples, and sometimes mythology.