Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Corrado Parducci - Detroit's master architectural sculptor







Corrado Parducci was possibly America's most prolific architectural sculptor, working, by his account, on or in over 600 buildings. I am producing a book, "Shadowing Parducci" that is an attempt to catch on paper what he did in clay, plaster, stone, terra cotta, bronze and wood. While reviewing his work many themes are presenting themselves and I think I'll respond to some of them here.



American art is frequently ambivalent about the place of Native Americans and their treatment in sculpture reflects this feeling. In architectural sculpture the use of both figures of natives and of their decorative elements was fairly widespread, particularly during the 1920s and 1930s. Parducci generated quite a few such images, many of them reproduced here.





During the 1950s (?) CP (as he is sometimes called . . ... by me) was commissioned to create a statue of the Shawnee leader Tecumseh to be placed on a rough fieldstone pedestal on Walpole Island, First Nations territory across the Canadian border from Detroit. Funding for the project fell through and all that remains of the project is the pedestal and the maquette that CP produced.




As always, feel free to drop me a comment if you wish more details on these works, or anything else.

7 comments:

American Genius said...

These are fantastic!

timothy Cook said...

Einar, Your work is overwhelming and facinating. It's a shame you didn't get to look around Guatemala or see the Brazilian Baroque. I am advising you to get to Myanmar before the Seven/ elevans. Tim Cook

markt said...

Hi. I was introduced to Joe (Corrado) Parducci around 1971-2 by his friend and 'studio neighbor' Andy Maglia, who had a large stained glass/mosaic/fresco/architectural decorating studio three blocks away from Joe's. After Andy died, I visited and worked with Joe a number of times until shortly before his death.

Joe was a delightful person and a phenomenal sculptor. He is certainly deserving of a book in tribute to his great work.

If you have any pictures of the top of the Guardian Building in Detroit, or its interior 'great hall', or of the Shrine of the Little Flower in Royal Oak, post a couple pix and give your visitors a real mind-boggling experience!

Einar said...

I hope to have. more.

D Oliver-wooodcarver said...

Einar,

This is fascinating work by Parducci and your work to document it and other sculptors is amazing. I am a woodcarver/sculptor and would love to see some detail of his work. I read on the site you were writing a book called "shadowing Parducci" did you finish this book? I would like to buy a copy if they are available. Please get in touch with me..doug@texaswoodcarver.com

Best,
Doug

pat ellis said...

hi-i purchased 2 wooden carved gryphons and was told these came from the outside of a building in detroit. How would i find out if they were carved by Corrado Parducci?

pat ellis said...

hi-i purchased 2 wooden carved gryphons and was told these came from the outside of a building in detroit. How would i find out if they were carved by Corrado Parducci?