Ibram Lassaw 1913 - 2003 American, born Egypt Abstract Expressionism/ New York School Sculptors
A founding member of American Abstract Artists in 1937, Ibram Lassaw was one of the first nonrepresentational sculptors in the United States. In 1954, Lassaw, then 41 years old, purchased a back lot on Fireplace Road in Springs and built a summer cottage and studio. When he became a full time resident in 1962 he added a large, freestanding studio to his property and frequently saw his neighbor, Willem de Kooning, who lived close-by. Throughout his life, Lassaw worked in a variety of materials. Early on, these included plaster, steel, and Plexiglas. But it was his welded metal wall compositions and freestanding constructions that secured his reputation. Using an oxyacetylene torch, he fused metal rods to create intricate, lattice-work-like configurations. For patination, the artist used acids, alkaloids, and alloys. Although the titles of several sculptures refer to astronomy, many also recall branches in winter or cracks in New York sidewalks. Also interested in Zen Buddhism and religious mystics, Lassaw believed, “It’s what’s there, not what is implied.” “There” was comprised of shape, color, texture, and movement. “Most of the time,” the artist said in 1988, “we’re thinking about tomorrow (our plans) or remembering yesterday (memories). Abstract art focuses on the present moment.” [Phyllis Tuchman]
Sculptor Ibram Lassaw moved to Springs in the mid-1950s and remained there until his death in 2003.