Academic journal article The Sculpture Journal

Editorial

Academic journal article The Sculpture Journal

Editorial

Article excerpt

One evening towards the end of last year, I happened to be in the Royal Academy when an event occurred that I had never before witnessed: the Acclamation of a new President, by his fellow Academicians, on the stairs of the Academy. The man who became the 26th President of the Royal Academy on 8 December 2012 was Christopher Le Brun: a paintersculptor. Among Presidents of the Royal Academy before him, only Frederic, Lord Leighton could be so described. Indeed, in the life of the Academy since its foundation in 1768, only two sculptors have become President, both of them in the last halfcentury: first, Sir Charles Wheeler, and then, most recently, Philip King. In an era when British sculpture has flourished and reached the peaks of international notoriety and fame, this strikes me as an extraordinary fact, worthy of further consideration. Picasso also was a painter-sculptor, while Degas and Matisse, for all they used sculptural techniques to great effect, remained painters. Discuss.

It is clearly not the Editor's job to exercise judgmental views, particularly on the aesthetics of any of the works under discussion in articles which have come through two double-blind peer reviews. However, I cannot refrain from observing that the camera lies. It does. Being in Dublin for the funeral of the nonagenarian Irish painter Louis le Brocquy, a beautiful, austere occasion wrapped in Mozart, I went to see the Oscar Wilde memorial in Merrion Square Park that is the subject of a thoughtful article in this issue. …

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