DescriptionViktor Schreckengost (American, 1906-2008)
Original Presentation Models for the Cleveland Zoo Bird Tower Panels (Four Works), 1950
17-1/2 x 26 inches (44.5 x 66.0 cm) (each)
Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Ohio, "Viktor Schreckengost and 20th-Century Design," November 12, 2000 - February 4, 2001.
H. Adams, Viktor Schreckengost and 20th-Century Design, Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Ohio, 2000, pp. 74-6, p. 75 illustrated.
H. Adams, Viktor Schreckengost: American Da Vinci, Tide-Mark Press LTD., Windsor, Connecticut, 2006, pg. 62-3, p. 62 illustrated.
Viktor Schreckengost created these four plaster plaques as presentation models for the monumental 5 x 8-foot glazed terracotta wall reliefs he was commissioned to design for the Cleveland Zoo's Bird Tower in 1950. As someone who "thought" in clay, he first sculpted smaller-scale clay reliefs of the five extinct and/or endangered birds his reliefs were the feature on the Tower, and then cast four of those in plaster for transport to meetings and discussions. (Only four plasters were created.) The plasters were an integral part of the process. The four birds depicted in the plaster reliefs are: the Hesperonis (best-known bird of the Cretaceous period, and a good swimmer), Diatryma (giant dinosaur-looking bird whose small wings and powerful legs suggested it ran rather than flew), Dodo (native to Mauritius this brightly colored bird with stout legs could not fly and was easy prey for human predators) and American Bald Eagle.
Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000.
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