The early sculptures were created by carving and modelling stone, wood, metal, and ceramics. A revival and imitation of the Greco-Roman art were witnessed during the period between the 14th and 17th centuries. This was followed by the Baroque period. In the late 19th century, there was a rise in Modernism.
During this period, artists created sculptures by using a variety of different materials and processes. Here, we’ll take a look at some of the famous sculptors who created some stunning masterpieces:
Among the greatest sculptors of the High Renaissance period was Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni. He is often described as a universal genius, who also excelled in poetry, painting, and engineering. However, besides all these fields that he excelled in, he is renowned widely as a great sculptor.
After his death, many sculptors tried to imitate his style. This resulted in the rise of ‘Mannerism’, which was a major movement in the world of Western art. Some of his globally renowned works include ‘David’ and ‘Pieta’.
2. Gian Lorenzo Bernini
He is widely recognized for the creation of the Baroque style of sculpture. It made an attempt to capture the dynamic movement of human figures. They were meant to be explored from all angles and were thus displayed centrally. He was a child genius and became known as a prodigy when he was only 8 years of age. Bernini was also hailed as the Michelangelo of his century by some of the powerful patrons.
He later had a long and illustrious career. During this period, he produced some of the best works in sculpture ever created. Some of his greatest works include ‘Ecstasy of Saint Teresa’, which was created in the mid-17th century.
3. Auguste Rodin
Some of the sculptures created by Auguste Rodin were extremely realistic. They seemed real to such an extent that he was accused of taking a cast from a living model. He turned away from the decorative beauty and the idealism of the Greeks. This meant a major departure from the centuries-old traditions in sculpture.
He modelled his sculptures of the human body with realism. They displayed emotion through detailed and textured surfaces. During his lifetime, his prominent works were criticized owing to his departure from the predominant traditions of sculpture.
He still refused to change his style. After some time, he was recognized widely as the greatest artist of his time and was compared to Michelangelo. His work ‘The Thinker’ is among the most famous sculptures that were ever created.
4. Pablo Picasso
He is regarded worldwide as one of the 20th century’s most influential artists. He was one of the pioneers of the art movement called ‘Cubism’. It depicts the subject from various viewpoints for giving it a greater context. He was formally trained in painting, but he experimented a lot with sculpture.
This gave him the freedom to approach the discipline as a self-taught artist and break the conventional rules. From 1910 to 1914, he created Cubist sculptures and then didn’t create any sculpture in that form for over a decade. He experimented with structures created out of wire in the late 1920s.
These structures were then transformed into sculptures. During the last stages of his career, he produced coloured sculptures that were made from sheet metal.