SOLD - Wooden Sculpture of a "Man in the tree"
This fascinating hand-carved wooden sculpture from the late 19th century depicts the face of a distressed man, seemingly trying to pull himself away from the constraints of a tree. This sense of movement is accentuated by the flow of the man’s hair and beard, which connects his face to the tree and echoes the rounded shape of the piece from which he is carved. The expressive features of his face – his eyes which look diagonally upward, his eyebrows furrowed from his efforts, and his mouth open in exclamation – create a sense of drama and dynamism throughout the work. This sculpture, both in its shape and subject, is reminiscent of roof bosses; carvings found at the intersection of ribs in many vaulted ceilings of (primarily English) cathedrals from the medieval period. Bosses were extremely varied in subjects; however, expressive faces were among the more common motifs. These carvings protrude from the ceiling just as the man’s face protrudes from this piece of wood. The piece is crafted entirely out of a stressed piece of spouse, a unique technique which allows the texture and detailing of the wood to contribute to the detailing of the figure. This work is sure to inspire many conversations, and perhaps even stories, at your next dinner party!