The art of sculpture glorified gods and kings, demonstrated the power and wealth of the Church, exalted heroes, admired the ideal human body… For thousands of years sculpture was figurative, and only the 20th century opened new possibilities for it.
What is sculpture as a type of technique?
In the broadest sense, sculpture is the creation of three-dimensional figures by carving, moulding, casting and other methods. Traditional sculpture materials include wood, marble, natural stone, semi-precious stones, bronze, clay, alabaster and sandstone. Expensive and durable, marble and bronze are the aristocracy of sculpture. But if working with marble requires an experienced eye, a precise hand and good tools, making a bronze sculpture is a complicated multi-stage process. The sculpture should first be molded from clay, then a casting mould should be made in which the molten bronze is poured, and finally the finished product should be polished. The high price of bronze sculptures is therefore quite justified.
In contemporary sculpture the choice of materials is very wide: glass, metals (steel, aluminium, copper), concrete, fibreglass, various polymers, resins… as well as cardboard, paper, industrial waste and simply household refuse, as Italian sculptor Dario Tironi. After all, a modern sculpture can be made on a 3d printer!
What is the history of sculpture?
The beginning of the history of sculpture is lost in the depths of millennia. The oldest zoomorphic statuette is considered to be the Lion Man, made in the 4th millennium BC. Ancient Egyptian sculptors would have loved this ivory figurine, as they themselves were already masterfully combining human and animal traits – as, for example, in the famous Great Sphinx from the middle of the 3rd millennium B.C.
Sculptors of Ancient Greece found formulas of ideal beauty, and to this day Venus of Milos, Apollo of Belvedere and other “Greeks” are regarded as models. This ideal, it is true, was forgotten in the Middle Ages, but can it be said that Gothic sculpture is inferior to Greek sculpture? It is, so naïve in today’s view, good in its own way. But the European sculpture of the XVI-XIX centuries has given mankind a lot of masterpieces using antique canons of beauty.
The 20th century has shattered the rules which had been written down for so long! In the era of modernism sculpture became cubistic, abstract, expressive, kinetic… Heaviness and materiality were replaced by lightness and movement, and the fantasy of the author is now valued higher than classical beauty and expensive materials.
What sculpture artworks can be?
Yes, contemporary sculpture is eclectic, strange and outrageously free. It can be huge like Taratantara by Anish Kapoor, hyper-realistic like Bruno Walpoth, geometric like Michael DeLucia, molecular like Graham Caldwell, paneled or in relief, glowing and jingling. Most importantly, it should not be boring. The most popular types of sculpture today:
- Human figure, nude
- Nature motifs, vegetation
- Religious themes
How to choose sculpture artwork?
Before you buy a sculpture for an interior, you need to assess the potential of the space, as a three-dimensional work is not displayed in the same way as a painting. Usually a small podium or shelf should be set aside for the sculpture, and good lighting should be provided (possibly from different sides).
If you’re thinking of buying a sculpture as an investment, consider a realistic sculpture in bronze or stone. For classic interiors these would be the best choice. High-tech or minimalist interiors, on the other hand, are more likely to accept abstract or grotesque sculptures.
How to buy sculpture?
Like any work of art, sculpture can be bought online. This method saves the buyer time and allows them to order their favourite work from anywhere in the world. It’s a special treat to find works by completely different authors that overlap and create a unique sculpture collection! Of course, if you buy it online, you will worry about shipping – it won’t get damaged on the road – but if you order it from a reputable retailer, you can be sure of the quality of the packaging.
Modern sculpture from Eastern Europe on G.ART Gallery
Online platform G.ART Gallery works with contemporary Eastern European sculptors. The G.ART features original sculptures in various styles. Here everyone can choose a work according to their financial and aesthetic preferences. G.ART’s art specialists are always ready to give advice, tell you more about the artist and help you find the right sculpture for your interior.