Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Lorado Taft: Part II [sculptures, outside of Chicago]

Taft is my all time favourite Chicago sculptor!
I have earlier covered his work in Chicago, in Part I of the series,
Lorado Taft [Various sculptures in Chicago].. click here..

Lorado Taft: Part II [Sculptures out of Chicago]
This year [2012], I took two one-day trips, especially to see signification works of Lorado Taft, outside of Chicago. 
  • Oregon, IL [June 26, 2012] to see The Eternal Indian / BlackHawk .. click here..
  • Urbana-Champaign, IL [July 13, 2012], to see Alma Mater, click here..
Both the trips, were very productive and I could see much more than what I had planned...

Lorado Zadoc Taft [April 29, 1860 – October 30, 1936] arguably one of the greatest sculptors of Chicago was born in Elmwood, IL, and died in his home studio in Chicago. He studied art at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign [UIUC], and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. He taught at the School of The Art Institute of Chicago [SAIC] from 1886 until 1907, and continued to lecture there until 1929. Taft was closely associated with Chicago's World's Fair [Columbian Exposition] of 1893, where he employed some female students dubbed as White Rabbits. In 1903 Taft published The History of American Sculpture, the first survey of the subject.

Now back to Taft's sculptures, outside of Chicago..

The Eternal Indian
popularly known as The Black Hawk
by Lorado Taft
1911 / 50-foot tall concrete sculpture
Location: Lowden State Park, Oregon, Illinois.
For more,..click here..

Oregon is also famous for the Eagle's Nest Colony, which was started in 1898, when a group of artists,  associated with the Chicago Art Institute, leased land on the bluff overlooking the Rock River on the east bank. This group of artists with painters, sculptors, writers, poets and musicians established summer homes there and continued to meet in summers until 1942, when the lease was terminated with the death of the last surviving original member. Lorado Taft was among the founding members of the Eagle's Nest Colony. The maquette of many of the sculptures made by artists at eagle's Nest Colony are the Oregon Public Library.

The Oregon Public Library,  registered in the US National register of Historic Places. The building was built by Chicago architectural firm of Pond and Pond, and has characteristics of Arts and Crafts Movement.  The Second Floor of the Oregon Public Library, has art collection from Eagle's Nest Colony, which includes, working model for Taft's 50-foot sculpture"The Eternal Indian".

Second Floor of the Oregon Public Library, with  art collection from Eagle's Nest Colony.
American Indian - by Lorado Taft
Working model for Taft's 50-foot sculpture"The Eternal Indian".
Location: Oregon Public Library

"Aspiration" - by Lorado Taft.
said to be Taft's final statue.
Photographs of the studio at the time of the artist's death shows this sculpture.
Location: Oregon Public Library

Maquette for "Blind " - by Lorado Taft
Location: Oregon Public Library
This is one of Taft's most impressive symbolic sculptures. It was inspired by Maeterlinck's tragic drama, "The Blind". The piece portrays the moment when the group realizes that the baby in the middle can see and lead the group to safety.
The Soldier's Monument - by Lorado Taft
Dedicated: 1916
Location: Court House Square,  Oregon, IL.
[southeast corner of Ogle County Courthouse]
The Fish Boys
Location: Mix Park, Oregon, IL.
Original bronze sculptures were designed and cast in bronze as part of Taft's "Fountain of the Great Lakes", click here .. at the Chicago Art Institute of Chicago, South Garden. The Oregon's "Fish Sculptures" are constructed by a special blend of concrete and crushed quartz, incorporating pebbles from Potomac River.
And now to Urbana-Champaign, IL
Alma Mater - by Lorado Taft
Unveiled on Alumni Day, June 11, 1929..
Location: UIUC Campus, Altgeld Hall
corner of W Green St. and S Wright St.
[UIUC is University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, IL]
A Daughter of Pyrrha - by Lorado Taft
Fragment  from the incomplete "Fountain of Creation", are in the campus of UIUC.
Fountain of Creation - was never completed.  It was proposed to be on the western edge of the Midway Plaisance, as a counterpart  to the "Fountain of Time" on the eastern edge. Taft planned 38 monumental figures and figure groups for the "Fountain of Creation". But only four were carved in stone. Two flank the entrance of the UIUC Main Library [daughters of Pyrrha] and two are on the south side of Foellinger Auditorium [sons of Deucalion]. In addition, a scale model of the central group for the "Fountain of Creation" is at the Krannert Art Museum.  For more, click here..

Krannert Art Museum
Location: Urbana-Champiagn, IL
At Taft's death, the University of Illinois at urbana-Champaign [UIUC] inherited the contents of Taft's Studio. It included maquettes of some of Taft's major commissions. Some of these are at display at the Krannert Art Museum, at UIUC.
The Spirit of Art - by Lorado Taft
1936-37 / Bronze..
The relief shows the personification of the arts as powerful, beautiful female figure enthrowned with an artist's palette in her left hand.
Location: Krannert Art Museum, at Urbana-Champaign, IL.

The Blind - by Lorado Taft
Location: Krannert Art Museum,  Urbana-Champaign, IL.
The Blind was cast in bronze in 1988, from the museum's Kinkerd Pavilion entrance.
For more on The Blind",  click here..

Portrait Bust of Don Carlos Taft [Lorado Taft's father]
- by Lorado Taft
1893 / reworked 1936
Plaster tinted yellowish brown
For more of Taft's work at the Krannert Art Museum, click here..

The Eternal Indian - by Lorado Taft .. click here..
Taft in Oregon, click here..
Alma Mater - by Lorado Taft..  click here..
Fragments from Fountain of Creation, click here..
Blind - by Lorado Taft, click here..
Lorado Taft at Krannert Art Museum, click here..

1 comment:

adgorn said...

Some fodder for future Taft trips down that way: