'Athlete III' signed 'Stella Shaw', numbered 2/8 and stamped 'B' (lower right leg) bronze 180cm. (70 7/8in.) high (not including base)
The following six lots are by the South African sculptor Stella Shawzin. Born in the Transvaal, South Africa she is dedicated to the study of human forms, inviting viewers to engage with the work as a starting point for examining themselves. For Shawzin, "South Africa's complex society has been my inspiration... the broad spectrum of humanity is my concern... all the emotional impact of a lifetime [has gone] into my interpretation of the Human condition".
She ran her own foundry in Constantia, Cape Town and some of her large sculptures were carved at Carlo Nicoli's studio in Carrara, Italy.
The present lot is one of a series of Athletes. The dramatic posture and exaggerated hands and feet of the monumental figure participate in creating a dynamic and expressive piece that depicts the precise moment the athlete breast's the tape in a final desperate bid for victory. By capturing the fluidity of movement rather than a static pose, the artist evokes the athlete's ceaseless striving, as well as a sense of the inner yearning from which physical excellence springs.
A photograph of the artist working on the figure of the Athlete III in clay is illustrated in the Weintraub Gallery catalogue, p. 44.
EXHIBITED (a cast, possibly different number): London, Roundhouse, 2001 New York, Weintraub Gallery, 1994
LITERATURE: Weintraub Gallery, Stella Shawzin, recent sculpture, (New York, 1994), another edition, illustrated plate 38.