Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Richard Hunt

Richard Hunt has been Chicago's premier public sculptor since the days of Albin Polasek - and maybe even back to Laredo Taft.

The piece I see most often is "We Will", pictured above,  located  on Randolph St., just outside the Cultural Center.  And I hate it.  It exemplifies urban clutter.

But last month, I found this on display at the Smart Museum, and really liked it - as a defiant, joyful self expression - asserting something like "Here comes a creative person"

It was done about 50 years earlier - and fits a coffee table instead of a city street.

Egon Weiner

Egon Weiner

And I've had Richard Hunt on my mind ever since I saw him in a video paying tribute to one of his teachers at the Art Institute, Egon Weiner, who had an exhibit earlier this year.

It does appear that Weiner's flame-like sense of form has lived on in the work of his student

But still -- I wasn't really expecting the incredible proliferation of ecstatic shapes that are now found in the retrospective at the Cultural Center.

Jo's Apotheosis, 2014

Was this wildly playful confection really made this year by an 80 year old man ?


I'd like to see this piece on permanent display somewhere.

Flightform, 1958

A few things might be said about these works:

*they are figurative in gesture, if not anatomical detail

*they are brash and assertive - but also feel vulnerable

*they are each  a "song of myself" - like a virtuosic, extended solo in dance or music.

Caryatids, 1974

Rake, 1986


Linear Construction, 1956


Study for "Play", 1967


Hybrid Form, 1977

Hybrid Muse, 1985

Jupiter, 1990

Family Tree

Changed Game

alternative model for "We Will"