Polish artist, Igor Mitoraj was born in Oederan in Saxony, Germany. After moving to his mother's national home of Poland, Igor Mitoraj began the path to becoming a prolific sculptor, expressing various perspectives on the human shape, form, and fleshy casing. Living until the age of 70, his career took him from his Eastern European beginnings, to France where he was able to escape the ravages of Communism, in order to study art to even higher levels.
Now established as one of the 20th centuries most celebrated sculptors, famous for body parts, bandages and expressionless-ism, a work and legacy which stretches across the globe is always recognisable as the work of this one artist. Perhaps sought to be replicated in newer styles, the influence of Mitoraj will be reaching the creative dreams of many more to come.
“I feel that a piece of arm or a leg speak far more strongly than a whole body.” - Igor Mitoraj
In the UK, perhaps his most famous work is the “Head Lulled to Sleep- 1983” which sits outside of the famous Canary Warf tower, once the tallest building in the country, now a mere runner up.
More often than not, it is just one section of the body that we notice, the bit that grabs our attention can be for any reason, and Igor captured that fascination with suggestion extremely well. The use of dismemberment of form, throwing in of unusual colours, occultation of features with bandages, allows us to explore with our imagination when given only the slightest prompt.
Human familiarity grants us the ability to truly determine for ourselves what may be being communicated with each piece. Allowing us to explore how we perceive the world in a situation without the whole picture is a skill that is helpful to have, especially when being careful to not make assumptions in real life. How we interpret lifeless images and art can help us to appreciate what we instantly assume, or take for granted when given a human situation.
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