Monday, July 7, 2014

William Kent Sculpture

In the 1960s William Kent's works were hailed by the New York Times as “Masterfully rendered and highly refined in technique, they smolder with a timeless power.” Kent’s work was in the 1966 Whitney Biennial and other museum exhibitions. He even invented an entirely new printing medium. But this master sculptor, one of America’s greatest, was soon overlooked and then forgotten. An irascible character, contemptuous of the commercial art world, he disappeared from the New York scene. He chose an ascetic path, living and working in a dairy barn nestled in the rolling hills of Connecticut. A New York Times critic once called him “the world’s greatest living carver of wood; there’s not even anyone close.” His huge and awe-inspiring carved wood sculptures have been compared to those of Brancusi. And his paintings and monoprints push far beyond those of Warhol.

 A carved wooden bowl sculpture, 1950s. Signed on the bottom initials WK inside a rectangle.  This work appears in his book. William Kent Carvings A Record. Organized & printed by William Kent on The Philistine Press, New Haven, Connecticut, 1960. By the artist WK. "These bowls were not made to hold mixed salads, fruit, or assorted nuts; nor were the large ones fashioned to be used as planters. They are interesting shapes, and the small ones were designed to be hung on a wall and looked at."
 This amazing example of a forgotten master carvers work is 33 inches long.

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