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 James Croak  (1951 - )

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Lived/Active: New York/Ohio      Known for: surrealist sculpture, figure

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Ad Code: 4
James Croak
from Auction House Records.
DIRT BABY
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following was submitted by the artist May 2004:

James Croak is a surrealist sculptor using conceptual figuration as his technique. Croak was born in Ohio in 1951 where he lived until the age of eleven then with his family moved to Louisiana where he attended public schools. Croak studied sculpture at the Chicago campus of the University of Illinois and continental philosophy at the Ecumenical Institute, also in Chicago. Similar to most sculptors from Chicago at that time his own work took the form of massive, abstract, metal sculpture.

Receiving an artist in residence grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1976, Croak worked in Wichita, Kansas, speaking to the public about issues concerning contemporary art. Also he learned specialized techniques for fabricating with aluminum from the airplane factories in there. From 1970 to 1978 Croak made over seventy works in aluminum which he painted in bright, neon-type colors and with titles such as Modern Emotion, a harbinger of the work to come. In 1976 Croak moved into an old 14,000 square foot fire station in downtown Los Angeles. There he quickly abandoned the abstract impulse he was taught in Chicago and returned to figural work creating his Heroic Metaphor series.

In 1984 he left the West Coast for New York City where he began creating his cast dirt sculpture made with a combination of dirt and binder that he invented in 1985. This technique led to the Dirt Man series, the Hand Series, the Dirt Baby pieces, and the Window Series.

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