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Lee Lawrie

(1877—1963)


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(1877–1963).

Sculptor. Known especially for public monuments and architectural embellishments, he employed a simplified and stylized form of representation. Born in Rixdorf, Germany, Lee Oscar Lawrie grew up in Chicago. In 1891 he began working for neoclassical sculptor Richard Henry Park (1832–1902), preparing decorations for the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893. Subsequently, he worked for sculptors in Chicago, Massachusetts, and New York, where he assisted Augustus Saint-Gaudens. In 1910 he earned a BFA from Yale University and remained to teach until 1918. Later, for many years he maintained a studio near Easton, Maryland, where he died. Lawrie developed a style of broadly conceived volumes, often flattened in the case of his architectural decorations, appropriate to the large scale of much of his work. He provided stylistically congruent sculptures for numerous Gothic revival and art deco buildings designed by Ralph Adams Cram or Bertram Goodhue. These include the monumental reredos and other decorative elements (1916–13) for St. Thomas Church in New York and embellishments for the early 1920s Nebraska state capitol in Lincoln. Lawrie served as director of sculptural programs at the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago and also made significant contributions to the sculpture of the 1939 World's Fair in New York. His most widely known work, the huge bronze Atlas in New York's Rockefeller Center, dates to 1937.

Subjects: Art.


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