This torso study is a unique piece by my good friend Larry Algaier (deceased). It is fired/glazed ceramic and presented several challenges to the artist to produce, not the least of which is correctly supporting it in a large enough kiln for firing.
It took several tries to be successful, and there are (were) two similar pieces produced, though they may be lost with the dissolution of his gallery after his passing.
I always enjoy watching people in a gallery or other settings, responding to art. Art is SO subjective…completely different reactions from people viewing the same piece are the norm…and can tell you a lot about the person viewing the piece.
Reaction to the nudes I find particularly telling.
Men enjoy them, but tend to view them in quick, surreptitious glances…taken on several different circuits of the floor.
Women tend to stop, take their time, and openly view, admire, critique, and discuss them. My first three sales of my work were all nudes…and two of those were to women. The third was to a man that was buying it for his wife. She’d been in several times and admired it…
The more graphic the work, the more likely the women were to stop and observe it, and the shorter the time men would spend on it. I find that interesting as their preferences tend to be the other way around (the men prefer more graphic, the women more subtle).
This work is interesting in that folks seemed to either not notice it at all, or would spend time discussing it.
We had this work on the wall for some time. Women, in particular, liked to speculate on this piece.
“Who do you think he molded this on?”
“How did he get it off?”
“Must have been cold…”
“Not very well endowed, was she?”
“Why are there no nipples?”
“Did he do one of the rest of her?”
…were all frequent topics (I know the answer to these…not telling except for whoever ends up with this piece).
The understanding or appreciation of art is subjective. That’s what makes it art.
What do you think?