DescriptionDuane Hanson (1925-1996)
Baby in Carriage, 1983
Polyvinyl, polychromed in oil, mixed media and accessories
34-1/2 x 22 x 36 inches (87.6 x 55.9 x 91.4 cm)
Helander Gallery, Palm Beach, Florida;
Private collection, Los Angeles, acquired from the above in 1988.
Hokin Gallery, Bay Harbor Islands, Florida, 1983.
"My images don't get near what you see in real life. The world is so remarkable and astonishing and surprising that you don't need to exaggerate. What exists out-there is just mind-boggling."
Shocking yet sincere, the Baby in Carriage lays asleep in an umbrella stroller. He wears a baggy sweatshirt and sweatpants in the same light blue hue, the sweatshirt inscribed with John 8:7: "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast the first stone." A large blue bag dangles from the handles, decorated with yellow flowers in a gingham print and "My Baby's Things" written in a chunky, white outlined font. Unlike Women with Child in Stroller, a work from 1985 that depicts a mother and her child, Baby in Carriage stands alone. Yet, it is one of Hanson's most intimate works as it was made after his son, Duane Hanson Jr.
Duane Hanson began creating life-size, hyperrealistic sculptures in the 1960s, beginning with graphic scenes of police brutality. He eventually turned his attention to the middle class, capturing the averageness of American culture in the spirit of Norman Rockwell. "The subject matter that I like best deals with the familiar lower and middle class American types of today," Hanson explained. While he perfected the human skin by casting live models and then recreating them in synthetic resin, he went farther than skin-deep to expose the suffering and exhaustion of the working class. From tourists to blue-collar workers and housewives, Hanson shed an honest light on economic classes and confronted gallery and museum goers with reality. "My art is not about fooling people. It's the human attitudes I'm after-fatigue, a bit of frustration, rejection. To me, there is a kind of beauty in all this."
Hanson was born in Alexandria, Minnesota in 1925 and died in Boca Raton, Florida in 1996. His work has been exhibited internationally at institutions and galleries such as the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark; Serpentine Gallery, London; Aperture Foundation, New York; Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Daimaru Museum of Art, Tokyo; Gagosian Gallery, New York and Paris.
Surface grime; two thin scratches to the right hand; a few small spots of discoloration to the fabric; fading to the blue fabric; minor degradation to the bottle.
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