Form to the sculptor is all and yet it is nothing.
It is nothing without the spirit;
with the idea it is everything.
I came across this art piece yesterday while perusing Musetouch.net. Having featured a lot of paintings, a change of pace was needed to show the depth and volume art allows us. Michael Wilkinson began his art career 1979 in New York and is best recognized for his contributions to acrylic sculpture. Influenced by a myriad of styles including the Romantic, Classical and even the Japanese aesthetic, he is viewed today as one of the pre-eminent sculptors of our time.
Acrylic sculpture is a bit of an anomaly in the artistic world because it is not limited by a distinct space. What do I mean by this? These sculptures appear to be made from ice and look as though its figures are captured in a different reality. When illuminated by light, they act as a prism and are able to create a wholly new perspective on space and time. Made from optical crystal, or Lupite, it is the clearest known material and ideal for creating surreal, beautiful illusions. Obviously, making these art pieces is a complex process in which most artists do not have the talent and/or patience to master. (To see an example of a full acrylic sculpture Click Here —-> HERE)
Now, I love Michael Wilkinson for his unique perspective on art in this modern age. Regarding sculpture and art he stated,
Whether it is the heroic grandeur of Michelangelo’s David, the love of a man for a woman in Rodin’s The Eternal Idol, or the radiant world depicted in the sparkling drawings of Frank Lloyd Wright, art has always affirmed my deepest beliefs about the beauty of life.
In an age where the purpose of much “art” is to shock and offend, art of beauty and meaning is a bright spot; it is balm for our eyes and our souls. I believe art should uplift the human spirit. that is why I seek the ideal in my art; the ideal illuminates our potentialities. It is an affirmation of the best within us.” -Michael Wilkinson
I agree with his opinion of modern art. After World War II, I have felt a deep disconnection to the beauty and ideal wrought by artists since the Renaissance. It is definitely rare to find an artist with such a deep bond with traditional beauty and artistry.
I chose his art piece Lodestone because it was the first of his works I saw. I will attach many of his others but for now I would like to focus on this one. So. . . why do I love this sculpture? Firstly, it reminds me of one of my favorite animated pieces Duet by Glen Keane. Like the short, the figures featured in Wilkinson’s work seem to be part of a lovely dance. Both the short and sculpture embody the beauty and majesty of the love between a man and a woman. This fundamental concept seems lost today, blackened and distorted on so many fronts but I would like to believe that there are still those who recognize the purity and grace of true love.
Secondly, the figures seem to be frozen in time right before an affirmation of love. Perhaps this is a reunion of lovers or even a simple moment when a couple stops to acknowledge the other. Whatever the case, it is a simple yet powerful how well Wilkinson pictured affection. Moreover, they look so life like, almost if real people were frozen in ice.
Lastly, I love the idea of separating these lovers from the rest of the world. Part of me feels that there is no way I could touch them even as an art piece. Victor Hugh, in his novel Les Miserables surmised,
When love has fused and mingled two beings in a sacred and angelic unity, the secret of life has been discovered so far as they are concerned; they are no longer anything more than the two boundaries of the same destiny; they are no longer anything but the two wings of the same spirit. Love, soar.
I believe I quoted this before, but it fits so perfectly. There is nothing more I could say about this artist or this work beyond my gratitude for his talent and view on love, beauty and life.
As promised, here are many of his other artworks. Some are actually bronze pieces shaped much like one of his muses Rodin.