George Segal: Nightscapes, 2000
Text by Sam Hunter
38 pages, Softcover
Published by Locks Art Publications
"George Segal, a master of 20th-century figurative sculpture, has been living and working on what was once a poultry farm in South Brunswick for more than 50 years. His tableaux of contemporary American life made in his studio, a former chicken coop, bring together elements of both sculpture and painting, high art and consumer culture. No history of the Pop Art movement could be complete without a discussion of his assemblages. In the early 1960's, the innovative white plaster casts of ordinary people doing ordinary things in a realistic environment had earned Mr. Segal an international reputation. At their best, these sculptures are more than representations of anecdotal situations; they evoke feelings of ennui and alienation, reflecting a deep concern for the human condition.
Eight sculptures and 16 drawings by Mr. Segal are presently on display here at the Locks Gallery. With works from 1983 to 1999, the show becomes an intimate retrospective exhibition of the artist in his late years. ''Helen Next to Window'' makes use of the familiar features that go back to his earliest environmental sculptures; the piece is a signatory white plaster torso in a real-world architectural setting. The artist directly cast his wife in the plaster-soaked Johnson & Johnson medical bandages that he had first used as an unprecedented sculptural material in the summer of 1961. Since the early days of his career, it has been very common for Mr. Segal to rely on family, friends and neighbors as models. Helen Segal has been a frequent subject, posing repeatedly for her husband of 54 years."
-Fred Adelson, "Revealing the Strength of Segal as Sculptor and Draftsman at Locks Gallery in Philadelphia," The New York Times, May 7, 2000