Dedicated to Peace
this local sculptor,
Freeman Schoolcraft (1905-1983)
in the catalog
of the Chicago Vicinity Show of 1948
(the exhibition of local artists
sponsored annually by the Art Institute of Chicago
before it was discontinued
by the last director, James Wood, in the 1980's)
And since it's heavy monumentality
resembled the above figure
that my father made in 1946,
it caught my attention.
(even if it doesn't quite have the gentle swing
that R.J. put into his)
And while we're comparing things,
might as well throw in this piece
by Milton Horn
that was done
about the same time.
(and is a bit more turbulent)
As a highschool student in Jackson, Michigan,
Freeman's work was noticed by Laredo Taft
who was in town doing some monuments.
So he was encouraged to study with Taft in Chicago,
and he later got
some nice commissions
from the W.P.A.,
like the above facade
of a courthouse in Peoria.
But tastes rapidly changed in the post-war era,
and though Freeman updated his style,
it just wasn't enough to hang onto
a career in the artworld.
So, like many artists of his generation,
he ended up as a teacher,
in his case,
moving to a small state college
in Augusta, Georgia.
Here's his last piece.
He made the maquette,
and students did the rest.
He looked like an old sculptor,
didn't he ?