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The Sculpture Program at the New York Studio School invites students to engage with the potent language of tangible materials. To generate purpose for this language, we experience and reconsider: mass, space, material, form, process, touch, image, color, structure, organization, balance, rhythm, movement, context, and relationship.
Our rigorous program, taught by a small group of dedicated professional sculptors, provides an opportunity to bring together process, perception, research, and critical dialogue. Each student gains a conviction for sculpture and a foundation from which his or her work can evolve throughout a lifetime.
Afternoon Sculpture courses allow participants to study and create alongside our MFA and Certificate candidates. During the Spring semester of 2019, Jilaine Jones will lead a course on Tuesday afternoons from 2pm – 6pm and Leonid Lerman will lead a course on Thursday afternoons from 2pm – 6pm.
Structure and the Body – with Jilaine Jones
Tuesdays, 2pm – 6pm
February 5th – April 30th, 2019
No Class: Tuesday, March 26th
Working experimentally with a range of materials, participants in this course will make structures in response to a model interacting with a spatial set-up. Sculptural work will be generated from perception, physical empathy, intuition, and imagination. Our discussion will be oriented around how the source, a body’s position in a setting, becomes a new structure. How that becomes idea for the participant will be explored through the behaviors of a range of materials, including clay, wire, wood, cardboard, mixed and found materials. The model’s positions and setting will change over the semester and will also be of an experimental nature. We will not be engaged with concerns of correctness for figure representation but rather will use this source for its containment of experience and ability to transform in regard to context. Generally, this course comes around back to working with the body but through the perspective of 20th cent sculpture ideas: which to a great extent have not included the figurative canon.
Students will initially be prompted by of a set of simple principles and questions to explore the subject and a range of materials including clay, wire, wood, cardboard, mixed and found materials. Discussion of the vocabulary of these initial studies will be the starting point. We will move through the semester using a progression of these materials, on their own and in combinations, to bring different issues to importance. Ultimately participants will choose to develop an idea about the source through a process and material which has grown through their work independently. Viewing and discussion of related precedents will be integrated throughout the course as well as a group viewing and discussion at a gallery or museum exhibition(s).
Sculpture: the Body and its Language – with Leonid Lerman
Thursdays, 2pm – 6pm
February 7th – May 2nd, 2019
No Class: Thursday, March 28th
This course will focus on making use of the figure and is aimed to help students understand the
structure of the human figure through direct observation and conversion of perceptual
information into a “language of sculpture.” The goal is to cultivate the skills of a young artist in
order to create an “image,” based on “timeless confrontation with a present moment.” (–T.
During the course of a semester, class will work on several projects focused around the
perceptual work from the figure:
– Sketches in clay with focus on movement, balance, proportions, 8-12”;
– Portrait. Bust from life with complex relation of head to shoulder, life size;
– Basic principles of relief sculpture. Portrait in relief;
– Half-life size figure modeling with focus on gesture, proportions, balance, sense of rhythm
and connection between different parts of the body, 24-36”;
– 3-D composition: interpretation of a classical sculpture or painting of the past. Spatial
relations in abstract and semiabstract terms (optional).
– Final discussion: the importance of the Modernist critique of traditional conventions for
present-day artists interested in working with the human figure.