The Angel has been a fixture in sacred art for as long as we can guess. Here is a look at a contemporary sculpture Benjamin Victor's take of the angel subject. You will find an emotive and poised angel that can captivate any audience with its grace and impeccable form. The sculptor draws inspiration from artistic titans such as Michelangelo and Bernini when designing and creating his figural sculpture. As the angel has a downcast glance as she is lifting off effortlessly into the sky one wonders what is she contemplating. Is the angel in prayer or sorrow?
Who is the Artist who Created the Angel
Benjamin Victor’s first work to catch the eye of the National Sculpture Society has his life-size statue of the biblical figure, Samson. Then, at age 23, Aberdeen Regional Airport commissioned him to create a group of three soldiers for their war memorial. His successes have only continued as he has produced both private and public art works throughout the West and upper Midwest until the state of Nevada commission him in 2005 to sculpt Native America historical figure Sarah Winnemucca to be displayed in the United States Statuary Hall in the Captiol Building in Washington D.C. Victor is the only living artist to have three statues in the US Statuary Hall. Along with Sarah Winnemucca you will find Chief Standing Bear (2019) and Dr. Norman E. Borlaug (2014).
Benjamin Victor's Statues Found In Statuary Hall, US Capitol, DCPrevious Next
Grace Found in The Angel
The sculptor was originally inspired by photographs of a ballet troupe in Salt Lake City, Utah. He was able to collaborate with photographer Christopher Peddecord and watch the dancers which allowed him to see model and dancer Dayna Marshall, who struck the inspirational pose. Victor refers to The Angel as both ethereal and natural as she invites her onlooker to contemplate various themes of duality:
“I just knew that the design itself just had such beauty and grace, and the concepts I was thinking of behind the piece, itself, were the timelessness and temporality of life. Our spirit, essentially, is without time and yet we’re in these bodies, which are very temporal. That was the paradox with which I was working with…you’ve got this young and beautiful angel and she’s ascending with her wings out and we are also looking at her sad and somber pose thinking about life and death, love and beauty, and loss.”
How the Artist Created the Angel
Victor cast two renderings—in clay and in bronze—to demonstrate his artistry. The Angel appears to be hovering in the hair with her wings spread open and her arms crossed, resting on her raised knee, as to suggest that she is maintaining her balance. Her classical drapery flows to insinuate its billowy nature as it provides the sculpture with a sound base. Her bowed head and downcast eyes suggest a delicate and serene pose, which only further enables the onlooker to forget that The Angel is sculpted from solid, heavy materials. Sculpted in 2017, The Angel is currently in the Collection of the Art Renewal Center.
Angel Is Considered Romantic Movement Sculpture
The Angel embodies art of the Romantic Movement, regarding the sculpture’s emotive nature. Victor hopes to communicate the effortlessness of the dancer’s dexterity, but it also captures his own effortlessness of dexterity. The artists that inspired Victor, Michelangelo and Bernini, are often heralded at their command of their materials. Much like ballet dancers, artists use sprezzatura, meaning designing a pose or piece that is difficult look easy. Just as the dancer uses impeccable strength, balance, and technique, Victor commands his mediums of clay and bronze to make such a substantive material appear delicate and afloat.