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Hefty 2-Ply Travels

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Jud Nelson: Marble Hyperrealism

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Archive for the 'townhouse.bz Art' Category

“I woke up this morning to see all of these photos of Fritz in the news, shot from every angle and thought, ‘I love you.’” The obituaries of Walter Mondale with their accompanying photos reminded sculptor Jud Nelson of his 1982 commission to carve a marble bust of Vice President Mondale for the U.S. Capitol.

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Nelson continues,

We had a photographer take multiple photos of Mondale while I measured his head and face for reference in order to carve the bust. I had to concentrate on every angle of Mondale’s face, head and shoulders. My first step was to sculpt a clay model that I worked on for three months before Mondale returned to my studio. Well, much to my surprise, Mondale walks in as a much thinner
man. He had been dieting those three months and my reference photos of him were obsolete!

Mondale looks at the clay model and said “My neck doesn’t look like that!” I started pulling clay off of the model to represent the thinner Mondale and basically had to start over. Regardless, hefty or slender, I had to capture Mondale.

While working on the commission, Fritz and I spent a lot of time together and realized we shared many similarities – we had fathers that were preachers and we loved to fish.

Mondale periodically visited Nelson’s studio, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn to model and check on the progress of his bust. At that time, Greenpoint was a crowded, working class neighborhood full of Polish immigrants. Mondale and Nelson would walk all over Greenpoint, going into stores and restaurants, talking to everybody they met. Mondale genuinely enjoyed people.

Mondale had an agenda for the sculpture, a smile on his face. As a minister’s kid, he knew a smile means “I love you”.

“It was an honor to know Walter Mondale and work with him on his bust.” Nelson adds, “May he rest in peace.”

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Posted by Marla Dekker April 22, 2021 / 1 Comments Filed Under Jud Nelson, townhouse.bz Art, Uncategorized, Walter Mondale

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Susan Scott Rowland passed away Sunday, August 25, 2019 at age 79. Susan lived a full life, as an artist who was endlessly looking, exploring and producing. I knew Susan and her artwork, during the later years of her life. Susan’s output was prolific, first as an abstract expressionist painter and then expanded to ceramics and botanical monoprints.

Below: Amaryllis Again, Oil paint on canvas, 1991

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Below: Pod with Dodies Blue, crayon, oil stick and charcoal on paper, 1999.

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Below: Pod/Yellow (diptych), crayon, oil stick and charcoal on paper, 1999.

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I was first drawn to Susan’s work through her writing. She was smart, well read and engaging. She thought deeply about creativity and its context. You can read her own words here about her Carlas and here about her 9/11 Weed Prints.

Below: Carla, high fired glazed stoneware, 2004.

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Below: 9/11 Weed Monoprint, 2002.

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Susan’s creativity surged with her exploration of ceramics – she twisted and distorted classic vessel shapes and then developed glazes that drew from her gestural abstract expressionist knowledge. During this period, Susan also experimented with monoprints. She printed weeds, snow, dog fur, ice and then, after 9/11, conceived of her 9/11 series.

Below: Pitcher, high fired glazed stoneware.

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Below: Bell, high fired glazed stoneware.

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Below: Vessels, high fired glazed stoneware.

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Below: Grasses monoprint with Bird, multimedia, 2009.

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Susan loved Brooklyn, where she last lived, with her husband, Judge Charles P. Sifton. Susan was a trustee of the Brooklyn Arts Council and sat on the New York State Council of the Arts and NYCDCA panels.

Susan’s family and her Ft Greene community came together to produce a retrospective show of her work, “Uncontained Forces”, in 2013 in the Charles P. Sifton Gallery at the Federal Courthouse. We all loved Susan’s work, and had not fully appreciated her prodigious output until then.

Below is Susan’s work in the process of being collected for her show.

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Susan with the poet and collaborator, Frederick L. Seidel.

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Below: Vessel, text – Frederick L. Seidel, 1991, high fired glazed stoneware.

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Below: Susan and Donald Sultan, friend and fellow artist.

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Below: The opening of Susan’s show, “Uncontained Forces”.

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Susan Rowland has work in the collection of the Guggenheim Museum and has had shows in Manhattan at the Kate Ganz, Marlborough and Spike Galleries, and at Susan Youngblood in Sag Harbor.

Thank you, Susan, for the gifts you left us. We will miss you.

Posted by Marla Dekker August 29, 2019 / No Comments Filed Under Classical Modernism, Mid-Century Modern, Sculpture, Susan Rowland, townhouse.bz Art

Susan Rowland continues to contribute to her longtime community, Ft. Greene, Brooklyn…

Learn more about Theater Three Collaborative‘s work and upcoming productions.

Posted by Marla Dekker May 16, 2016 / No Comments Filed Under Susan Rowland, townhouse.bz Art, townhouse.bz chronicles, What Is...

The Susan Rowland show is down from Guild Greene and can be viewed by appointment. Please call 718.398.6792 or contact us by email.

Posted by Marla Dekker October 31, 2015 / No Comments Filed Under Susan Rowland, townhouse.bz Art

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Mountains Forming by Isamu Noguchi, 1982 – 83, hot-dipped galvanized steel.

Are you wistful that summer is coming to an end and you are left craving moments with nature?

Go see the Noguchi sculptures just installed at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. A collaboration between the Noguchi Museum and BBG, the show features 18 Noguchi sculptures. It is expertly curated by Dakin Hart of the Noguchi Museum.

Dakin’s siting of the sculptures in the garden creates an exquisite interplay between each that highlights qualities of the other that might otherwise go unnoticed.

Indeed, the sculptures appear as if they were always meant to be there.

ThisEarthThisPassage440x440This Earth, This Passage by Isamu Noguchi, 1962 (cast 1963), bronze.

BirdSong440x440Bird Song by Isamu Noguchi, 1952 (cast 1985), bronze.

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 presetMagritte’s Stone by Isamu Noguchi, 1982 – 83, hot-dipped galvanized steel.

Age440x312Age by Isamu Noguchi, 1981, basalt.

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 presetUntitled (a monument to Ben Franklin) by Isamu Noguchi, 1986, basalt.

Showing from September 8 through December 13, 2015
For more information, contact the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.

Posted by Marla Dekker September 10, 2015 / No Comments Filed Under In the News, Isamu Noguchi, Modernism, Sculpture, townhouse.bz Art

15 new works on paper by Kamilla Talbot curated by townhouse.bz at our mid-century modern salon show.

Opening
Saturday, August 22th, 6pm to 9pm
@ Guild Greene Gallery
281 Greene Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11238

Showing through Labor Day, 2015
Fridays: 4pm to 8pm
Saturdays and Sundays: 12:30 to 7:30pm

or by appointment: 347.517.0711

Talbot’s new works on paper continue her distinctive use of watercolors and silkscreen printing. Painted en plein air in Maine, these pieces showcase Talbot’s celebrated color palatte with bold, painterly strokes. Join us at Guild Greene Gallery.

Posted by Marla Dekker August 16, 2015 / 2 Comments Filed Under Kamilla Talbot, townhouse.bz Art

The Apollo 5 space suit back from the moon and delivered to Jud Nelson’s studio to be worn by Astronaut Allan Bean as the model for Nelson’s sculpture, Man In Space.

It was during the final inspection of Hefty 2-Ply, Jud Nelson’s monumental, hyper-realist sculpture commissioned by the Walker Art Center, that the idea first came up. Nelson told Martin Friedman, the Director of the Walker, that he wanted to carve a weightless man. Two months later, Friedman called Nelson and said, “I’ve got the weightless commission for you. Give President Ford a call, he wants a Man In Space sculpture for his Presidential Library/Museum”. Ten minutes later, Nelson’s sculpture commission for Man In Space was being negotiated with President Ford.

Man In Space, completed in 1984, took two years to create, was 1.5 times life-size and weighed 3,000 pounds.

A studio visit by President Gerald Ford to see the progress of the sculpture, Man In Space, for his presidential library and museum.

Nelson set out to make the sculpture in clay and hard plaster. From the hard plaster, Nelson carved the sculpture with the final details. A mold was made of the finished hard plaster and cast in bronze. The bronze was heated to brush on an acid that gave it a natural white patina.

Jud Nelson in his studio working on the finishing of his sculpture, Man In Space.

The sculpture depicts an astronaut in a state of weightlessness emerging in space from the Extra Vehicular Activity hatch behind the spacecraft cockpit.

Jud Nelson with the sculpture, Man In Space, newly installed at the Gerald Ford Presidential Library and Museum, Grand Rapids, MI; 1984.

It represented an inspiring time for our country – the belief in science and the possibilities of the space program, with strong support from the government and a marriage of the arts to create a sculpture that is a tribute to our highest ideals, because we believed in a brighter future.
President Ford at the podium, Jud Nelson seated at left, at the the dedication for Man In Space at the Gerald Ford Presidential Library and Museum in Grand Rapids, MI, 1984.

See Jud Nelson’s artwork on townhouse.bz

Posted by Marla Dekker April 2, 2015 / 4 Comments Filed Under In the News, Jud Nelson, townhouse.bz Art

A Salon Exhibition Art, Objects and Furniture Exploring the Realm of Mid-Century Modernism

Featuring the townhouse.bz collection including Jud Nelson, Kamilla Talbot Piaget Studios, Kathy Urbina, Le Corbusier, Knoll, Milo Baughman, Pierre Jeanneret, Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Aldo Tura, Fornascetti, Edward Wormley.

Opening Saturday, July 26th, 2014
From 6 to 9pm
Showing through September 6th, 2014
Thu & Sun 12 to 6pm
Fri & Sat 12 to 7:30pm
or by appointment

@ Guild Greene Gallery
281 Greene Avenue
Clinton Hill, Brooklyn 11238
718 398 6792

Visit Faux Real and explore historic Clinton Hill. Guild Greene’s building is the original 1890s headquarters and laboratory for Bristol Myers. Fine dining nearby includes Speedy Romeo, Marietta, Locando Vini & Olli and Aita.

Shown above: Holos/Series 23, No.1 (Wood Match) Roman Travertine & Red Slate; Jud Nelson, 1994

Contact Us for more information.

Congratulations to friend and colleague, Karl Kipfmueller, on the feature of his beautiful home in the July/August 2014 issue of Elle Decor.

In addition to the incredible photos of Kipfmueller’s home, I highly recommend reading the accompanying article which captures Kipfmueller’s wit, historic references and details his highly personal solutions to his home decor. For example, I learned (but was actually not surprised) that the rich tones on his living room walls were achieved with several coats of tinted butchers wax!

Posted by Marla Dekker July 1, 2014 / No Comments Filed Under Faux Bois, In the News, Jean Michel Frank, Karl Kipfmueller, townhouse.bz Art

Townhouse is designed, written and produced by Dekker Babian. Townhouse is located in Brooklyn, NY. All text and photos © 2019.