Artist biography

Jacques Lipchitz 1891-1973

Sculptor born in Druskininkai in Lithuania (now part of Soviet Russia). Went to Paris in 1909 and studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, the Académie Julian and the Académie Colarossi. Became interested in primitive and archaic art, of which he began to form a collection. Through friendship with Rivera and Picasso, participated in the Cubist movement from c.1914 and made low-reliefs and sculptures in the round of still life, clowns, musicians, etc. similar to Cubist painting. Was a close friend of Gris from 1916. First one-man exhibition at the Galerie Léonce Rosenberg, Paris, 1920. Moved in 1925 to Boulogne-sur-Seine. His increasingly personal use of Cubism led in 1925-6 to the creation of open, transparent sculptures with ribbons of metal. From c.1929-30 began to use allegorical subject-matter drawn from classical mythology or the Old Testament, with more naturalistic anatomy and an emphasis on knotted, writhing forms; made a huge sculpture of 'Prometheus' for the 1937 Paris International Exhibition. Lived mainly in the USA from 1941, but spent the summers in Italy from 1963. His late works include a number of monumental sculpture commissions. Died on holiday in Capri.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, pp.447-8