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Popular American Artist Dead At 85

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Richard Serra - Talk with Charlie Rose (2001) KunstSpektrum Youtube Channel

American artist Richard Serra, best known for his monumental steel sculptures, passed away this week at the age of 85. The cause of death is listed as pneumonia.

Serra was nicknamed the “poet of iron” and is credited with reinventing sculpture by placing large upright slabs of iron into the ground. His works are currently displayed in major cities across the world, such as London, Berlin, and New York.

Guggenheim Museum’s outpost in Bilbao released a statement on their instagram following Serra’s passing.

Visitors to Richard’s work state that the sculptures evoke a range of sensations within them, from inner peace to physical oppression. The sculptures are said to induce vertigo in some visitors due to the scale and shape of the pieces.

Serra was born in San Francisco, where he was inspired by the large steel hulls of the ships in the shipyard where his father worked when he was a child. In his early life, Richard worked in a steel mill to pay for his education. Originally intending to become a painter, Serra attended Yale to study fine art, where he discovered his passion for creating sculptures. He expressed that “it was more intriguing to involve the viewer as a part of the artwork itself.”

Throughout his career, Serra made several close friends while striving to establish himself as an artist, including renowned composers Philip Glass and Steve Reich. In the late 1960s, Serra’s artistic reputation had grown, along with the scale of his projects.

The scale of Richard’s sculptures led to increased difficulty and danger in installing and removing the pieces. In 1971, while installing one of Serra’s works in Minneapolis, a worker was fatally crushed by a two-ton steel plate. Years earlier a worker lost his leg while attempting to dismantle one of Serra’s works.

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Rest in peace!

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  1. Pingback: Former US Senator Joe Lieberman Dies After Falling

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