The Getty Center
Date: Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Location: Getty Center, Museum Lecture Hall
Past Event

Mental Landscape / Cragg
Tony Cragg (British, 1949–) and Franz Xaver Messerschmidt (German, 1736–1783) share common characteristics in their sculpture: contained energy, an interest in materiality, and studies of form, among others. In this talk, Cragg discusses the diversity of his work, the allure of Messerschmidt's "Character Heads," and his continued interest in science, literature, and how these related disciplines inform his approach to sculpture.

One of the foremost contemporary British sculptors who has taught at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf since 1988, Cragg's body of work ranges from his early fragmented fields of detritus that showcase the human body in movement to distended, dynamic forms that hint at facial profiles. Despite the availability of space–age materials and methods of sculpting, Cragg's recent work displays an interest in more traditional materials (such as bronze, wood, and marble) that Messerschmidt also employed in his 18th-century works. Additionally, while many contemporary artists have embraced the advantages of machines and technology to produce their work, Cragg adheres to the studio tradition of the handmade and tactile in creating forms in all scales.

This lecture complements the exhibition Messerschmidt and Modernity.

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