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Frederick Hart: Make No Little Plans - A Collection of Important Works


Frederick Hart: Make No Little Plans - A Collection of Important Works
Nov 5 – Dec 31, 2010

"At certain moments in history, one encounters a work of art that possesses the aesthetic and contextual strength to signal the start of a new era. The Creation Sculptures is such a work. Within its forms lie the imagery and beauty to spark an American renaissance."

James Cooper, Editor of American Arts Quarterly

Frederick Hart's sculpture is timeless, important and enduring. It strives to restore wholeness and beauty of authentic humanness, and bring emotional and moral health, dignity and integrity to the human form and the mystery of the human spirit. Born in the modernist era whose prevailing winds consistently blew against him, Frederick Hart stubbornly refused to change his vision to suit the times. His work is at once traditional in its adherence to the human figure, radical in its sensuality, and innovative in its materials. These qualities place Frederick Hart's sculpture in the ranks of the most distinguished American artists of the twentieth century.

"Within the delicately turned forms and exquisitely chiseled features of Hart's Creation Sculptures is the DNA of a new movement...It has the tender power of a Michelangelo."

James Cooper, Editor of American Arts Quarterly

Frederick Hart's most celebrated public commissions include The Creation Sculptures on the west façade of Washington National Cathedral, which include three tympana Ex Nihilo, Creation of Day and Creation of Night, and three trumeau figures, St. Peter, St. Paul and Adam carved in Indiana limestone. Frederick Hart worked on this commission for almost 13 years. Author Tom Wolfe commented in The New York Times in January 2000: "(Hart) won what would turn out to be the biggest and most prestigious commission for religious sculpture in America in the twentieth century."

Another important monument created by Frederick Hart - the heroic bronze statue Three Soldiers, Vietnam Veterans Memorial - stands in Washington, D.C. Unveiled in 1984, it has become one of the most visited monuments in our capital. This work epitomizes Hart's belief about the role of art in society, commenting that it should "touch our fears and cares, evoke our dreams and give hope to the darkness."

A major accomplishment of Frederick Hart is the pioneer use of clear acrylic resin to create cast figurative sculptures. He patented the process by which one clear acrylic sculpture was embedded within another. In 1997, a unique casting of The Cross of the Millennium was presented by Hart to Pope John Paul II in Vatican, who called this sculpture "a profound theological statement for our day".

In 2004, five years after the artist's death, Frederick Hart was posthumously awarded The National Medal of Arts - the highest honor given an artist by the United States Government for his public works Ex Nihilo and Three Soldiers which "heralded a new age for contemporary public art."

If art is to flourish in the 21st century, it must renew its moral authority by rededicating itself to life. It must be an enriching, ennobling and vital partner in the public pursuit of civilization. It should be a majestic presence in everyday life just as it was in the past."

Frederick Hart

The exhibition at Contessa Gallery will feature important and rare works in bronze, clear acrylic resin and marble.

The opening receptions with Lindy Lain Hart will take place at our Legacy Village location (24667 Cedar Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44124) on Friday and Saturday, November 5 & 6th from 6 - 9 pm.