Thursday, January 29, 2009

Claes Oldenburg

Spoonbridge and Cherry 1985-1988
Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen
aluminum, stainless steel, paint
354 x 618 x 162 in.

It is time for me to select an artist for January. I just love the sculptures by Claes Oldenberg. After several years of working alone, he now works with his wife, Coosje van Bruggen to create some really, really big sculptures of everyday objects.

Here is some background information on him. Claes Oldenburg was born January 28, 1929 in Stockholm, Sweden, the son of a Swedish diplomat. As a child he and his family moved to United States in 1936, first to New York then to Chicago. His nationality is Swedish-American. He is best known for his large public Pop Art sculptures.

Corridor Pin, Blue, 1999
Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen
Stainless steel and aluminum painted with polyurethane enamel, edition 3/3;
21 ft. 3 in. x 21 ft. 2 in. x 1 ft. 4 in.

Pop Art was an art movement and style that began in England in the 1950s and then really got going in the United States during the 1960s. Pop artists focused their attention on familiar images and popular culture such as billboards, comic strips, magazine advertisements, supermarket products, famous icons, or everyday objects.

Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen
In July 1994, this outdoor sculpture was commissioned for the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art and was installed in the Kansas City Sculpture Park.

Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen (from the Netherlands) started working together during the 1970s. They have made more than 40 large-scale sculptures around the world. Now they live in the United States.

They take ordinary everyday objects for their sculptures but do them on a really large scale.

Center Square Plaza, Philadelphia, PA
Claes Oldenburg
1976, Cor-Ten and stainless steel
45 ft. x 12 ft. 3 in. x 4 ft. 6 in.