Lynn Chadwick Wanted for Purchase or Consignment

(1914 - 2003) CBE,

Lynn Chadwick was one of the leading British sculptors of post-war Britain. Born in Barnes, London in 1914, Chadwick was launched at the 1956 Venice Biennale, surprising the audience with his departure from previously dominant sculptural traditions and materials. Chadwick won the coveted prize for sculpture that year, the youngest sculptor ever to do so. He went on to an international reputation, and was appointed Commander, Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1964.
The characteristics of a Chadwick sculpture - form, stance, line, balance and attitude - are arrived at through his unique method of working. Whereas an architect might draw lines on a page; Chadwick developed a technique of taking steel rods and welding them together in space to criss-cross, join and radiate out, which formed three-dimensional shapes in space (armatures) akin to the architect’s space frame. He tended not to do a sketch beforehand – his sketches in his workbook came after the work was completed. The armature, formed by the welded rods, was filled with an industrial compound called Stolit, a mixture of iron filings and plaster that could be applied wet and, when dry, chased to achieve the surface Chadwick desired - sometimes textured, sometimes smooth – a skin, as it were, but with the original rods still visible. He often described his sculptures as being like crabs with their bones on the outside. This external armature was to define Chadwick’s imagery.
Although Chadwick continued to construct his sculptures by this method, in the late 1950s he decided to cast them in the more durable medium of bronze, which also allowed him to expand his practice from unique sculptures into editions. His unique construction method determines Chadwick’s personal imagery: multiple rods welded together grow into skinny heads, legs and capes in later works. He was able to explore endless variations to great effect. Looking back at his whole body of work, it is possible to see his work developing from mobiles and stabiles in the early 1950s into to animal forms, then evolving into more obvious figurative sculpture. Even at its most abstract and geometric, there is usually an allusion to natural forms in Chadwick’s work that underpins and gives vitality to it. Chadwick mainly created single or paired figures, but on occasion groups of three figures. The figures interact both with each other but also with the viewer of the sculpture. What is surprising while looking at his work is how personal it remains, and how timeless. He gave few interviews and would rather discuss the formal and practical nature of constructing his sculpture than its meaning. He often spoke of the feeling that he was just the craftsman. Lynn Chadwick died at his home Lypiatt Park, Gloucestershire, in 2003, aged 88.

Historical Sale Highlights

Following is a random selection of collectible works we have previously sold. Refresh this page to see more items.

Buffalo Resting
Frederick Arthur Verner
Watercolour (13.5x20.5 in) circa 1905
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Sketch at Little Turtle Lake
James Edward Hervey MacDonald
Oil on Panel (8 1/2 x10.5 in) 1924
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Fall
William Kurelek
Mixed Media (10.5x14.25 in) 1968
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Portrait of Sun Walking, Blackfoot Indian
James Henderson
Oil on Canvas (24x18 in)
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Slaughtering a Pig
William Kurelek
mixed media (10.5x17 in) 1968
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Baie Ste Paul
Clarence Gagnon
oil on panel (4.5x7 in) 1939
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Eveil
Rita Letendre
oil on canvas (12x14 in) 1961
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Mountain Landscape
Robert Pilot
oil on panel (8x10.5 inch)
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Pair of Rabbits
Leo Mol
Ceramic (3.38x5.75x4.75 in) 1957
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Chief Pat Grasshopper Sarcees
Nicholas de Grandmaison
oil (24x19.5 in) 1940
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