Tony Rosenthal         The official website of Tony Rosenthal

Chronology

1914
Born Bernard Rosenthal (nicknamed Tony), in Highland Park , Illinois , a suburb of Chicago .  

1930-32
Attended sculpture classes at The Art Institute of Chicago during last two years of high school.

1932-36
Attended The University of Michigan , Ann Arbor . Decided to become sculptor while taking a sculpture course. Influenced by small plaster reproductions of figures by Alexander Archipenko. Graduated with B.A.

1936
Returned to Chicago and rented a garage for use as a studio. Began giving evening classes in drawing and sculpture. Contacted Alexander Archipenko, then living in Chicago . Took a sculpture class with him in exchange for casting in terracotta a series of his semi-abstract reclining nudes. Worked abstractly for a short time, encouraged by Archipenko.  

1937
Began carving works in granite and marble. To improve technique, apprenticed part time with stonecutter. Worked part time for the Chicago branch of Saks Fifth Avenue creating sculptures for display.  

1938-39
Designed and made light fixtures and plaster decorations for interiors of Chicago theatres designed by architect William Pereira and his brother, Hal Pereira, a designer. Other projects for William Pereira included "A Nubian Slave" (1939, Cast Cement, 15 x 5 x 5 feet), Rosenthal's first sculpture commission and first large-scale work. Created for the Elgin Watch Company building at the New York World's Fair of 1939.  

1939
Oversaw the installation of "A Nubian Slave" at the New York World's Fair. Inspired by two fountains in Chicago by the well-known figurative sculptor Carl Milles, a sculptor-in-residence at the recently established Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills , Michigan . Rosenthal wrote to Milles and enrolled at Cranbrook . Studied with Milles and become friends with the designer Charles Eames and the architect Eero Saarinen.

1940
Returned to Chicago and continued carving in stone. Participated in his first group exhibition, "51st Annual Exhibition of American Paintings and Sculpture", The Art Institute of Chicago (Mother and Child, granite).  

1941
Showed the Hands of Moses, "45th Annual Exhibition of Works by Artists of Chicago and Vicinity", The Art Institute of Chicago . Rosenthal’s first work to enter a museum, Illinois State Museum , Springfield .
Produced Wall of Time (bronze plate, 10 x 8 feet), a relief and his second work of public sculpture, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago .
Spent several months in Oaxaca , Mexico , and further south; journeyed by foot, sketching and collecting Pre-Columbian art.
Called back to Chicago for WW II draft but declared 4F because of a disease contracted in Mexico .

1942
Showed The Little Prophet (alabaster) at "53rd Annual Exhibition of American Painting and Sculpture" and Guitarist (red Marble) at "46th Annual Exhibition of Works by Artists of Chicago and Vicinity," The Art Institute of Chicago .
A reclining figure in marble selected for "Artists for Victory, An Exhibition of Contemporary American Sculpture", The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

1943
Attended Corps of Engineers Officer Candidate School in Virginia after a year in the infantry. Stationed in England and commanded a unit consisting mostly of artists working on topographical models.
Saw a cast lead figure by Henry Moore at a gallery in London . Visited him in Perry Green, England , at the dealer's suggestion. First American soldier to visit Henry Moore.

1944
Sent to Paris after its liberation to produce models of French, Italian, and German terrain for use by the U.S. Army and Air Force. Because of a night work schedule, able to spend days exploring Paris and sketching at Grande Chaumiere, and open studio.

1945
Co-organized visits by American soldiers to artists' studios after VE Day through a program established by a French/American cultural relations committee. Took groups to studios of George Braque, Andre Derain, Le Corbusier, and Constantin Brancusi.
Brancusi invited Rosenthal and his fellow organizer to his studio several times and showed them his methods of working with and forging tools.
Taught sculpture for six months in Biarritz , France at a university set up by the Army to educate GI's waiting to return to the United States .

1946
Married Halina Kolowicz, a French resident who had taken his classes, in St. Jean-de-Luz , France .
Returned to Chicago in July and discharged from the Army. In the fall, won a group show competition at Associated American Artists Galleries, Chicago . The prize was a solo exhibition at the gallery (1947).
Moved to Los Angeles in October, encouraged by Charles and Ray Eames.
Frequently saw Charles Eames and John Entenza, editor and publisher of Arts & Architecture. Told Entenza of meeting Henry Moore and was asked to write an article about him. Hired by Entenza to lay out editorial sections and some covers of Arts & Architecture between 1946 and 1948. Continued to work intermittently for the magazine until the early 1960's.

1947
First solo exhibition, at Pat Wall Gallery, Monterey , California .
Solo exhibition at Associated American Artists Galleries, Chicago .

1948
Through Eames and Entenza, began meeting prominent architects in Los Angeles during a building boom. Commissioned over the next twelve years by a number of them to do sculptures for buildings they were designing in Los Angeles and elsewhere.
With wife, Halina designed a home and studio in Malibu .  

1949
Carved wood relief’s on aspects of drilling and refining for the General Petroleum Building , Los Angeles .

1950
Received first prize at "69th Annual Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture," San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (The Harp Player, bronze), and a purchase prize for the same piece in a group show of Los Angeles artists, Los Angeles County Museum .
First New York solo exhibition at Associated American Artists Galleries.
Solo exhibition, organized by the Western Museum Directors Association, traveled to three museums in California , San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Santa Barbara Museum of Art (1952), Long Beach Museum of Art (1952).  

1951
Participated in "American Sculpture 1951," The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (The Three Musicians, bronze), and in "146th Annual Exhibition," Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia (Crucifixion, bronze)  

1952
Created a fountain for Robinson’s Department store, Beverly Hills , California . Life magazine (April 6, 1953) ran an article on Rosenthal that included photographs of this work and one other.
Joined Catherine Viviano Gallery , New York .
First instructor of sculpture at University of California , Los Angeles .  

1953
First solo exhibition at Catherine Viviano Gallery , New York .
Participated in “Annual Exhibition of Contemporary American Sculpture”, Whitney Museum of American Art , New York .

1955
Installed The Family Group at Police Facilities Building , Los Angeles , California .
Commissioned to create an outdoor wall sculpture and a menorah for Temple Emanuel , Beverly Hills , California .
Participated in “Ill Bienal de Arte”, Sao Paulo , Brazil .

1956
Home and studio in Malibu destroyed by fire. Sculptures lain outside survived but with a flame-induced color. These were shown in a solo exhibition at Viviano Gallery , New York in 1959. Part of the exhibition traveled to the Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh .

1957
Exhibited in “LXII American Exhibition: Paintings”, The Art Institute of Chicago .

1958
Installed Computer Symbols at IBM’s western headquarters, Los Angeles , California . The work was based on an oscilloscope pattern from a digital computer.
Participated in “Contemporary American Sculpture”, Exposition universelle et internationale de Bruxelles , United States Pavillion, Brussels .
Second show at Viviano Gallery , New York .  

1959
Participated in “Recent Sculpture , USA ”, The Museum of Modern Art , New York . The exhibited sculpture was selected for acquisition by the museum’s director, Rene d’Harnoncourt and James Thrall Soby, advisor to and chairman of the trustees’ Committee on Museum Collections.
Went to New York for the exhibition and stayed three months. Met New York artists such as Herbert Ferber, Adolph Gottlieb, Mark Rothko and Richard Stankiewicz.
For Computer Symbols (see 1958), received the Award of Merit for outstanding craftsmanship in the fine arts from the Southern California Chapter of the A.I.A.

1960
Third exhibition at Viviano Gallery , New York .
Awarded a Tamarind Fellowship from the Tamarind Lithography Workshop, Los Angeles , California , directed by Judy Wayne and worked in collaboration with master printers to create black and white abstract lithographs.
Moved from Los Angeles to New York . Until 1990, spent nearly every summer in Springs, New York , on Long Island .

1961
First show at Kootz Gallery , New York .
Sam Kootz persuaded Rosenthal to use his nickname “Tony” professionally.  

1962
Participated in “Art Since 1950, American and International”, Seattle World’s Fair, Washington , where he also served as a juror for an international competition for a large fountain.
Included in “157th Annual Exhibition”, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts , Philadelphia and in “Annual Exhibition 1962: Contemporary Sculpture and Drawings”, Whitney Museum of American Art , New York . Two Sculptures acquired by the Whitney.

1963
Showed at “Eleventh Exhibition of Contemporary American Painting & Sculpture 1963”, Krannert Art Museum , University of Illinois , Urbana-Champaign. The Museum purchased the work using a grant from the Ford Foundation.
Second solo at Kootz Gallery , New York .
Commissioned to make two wall-like sculptures Gateway Buildings , Century City , Los Angeles .

1966
Third and last solo exhibition at Kootz Gallery , New York , followed by the retirement of Sam Kootz.
Solo exhibition at Guild Hall, East Hampton , New York .
Joined M. Knoedler & Co. Gallery , New York .
Included in “Sculpture and Painting Today: Selections from the Collection of Susan Morse Hilles”, Museum of Fine Arts , Boston .
Participated in a group exhibition organized by The American Federation of Arts that traveled to Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; Denver Art Museum, Colorado; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin.

1967
Alamo ” installed at Astor Place as part of “Sculpture in Environment”, a citywide temporary installation of approximately twenty-five public sculptures, sponsored by the New York City Administration of Recreation and Cultural Affairs and organized by Doris C. Freedman, then Special Assistant for Cultural Affairs. In response to requests by members of the immediate community, the sculpture remained in place and was given to the city by Susan Morse Hilles and the artist.
Alamo ” was one of the first abstract sculptures permanently installed in New York and is currently one of five works by Rosenthal in outdoor public locations in Manhattan .
Recipient of the Outstanding Achievement Award, The University of Michigan , Ann Arbor .  

1968
“Endover” installed at the University of Michigan , Ann Arbor .
First solo exhibition at Knoedler Gallery , New York .
Included in “1968 Annual Exhibition: Contemporary American Sculpture”, Whitney Museum of American Art , New York . One of eight times that he has shown at the Whitney.

1969
Commissioned to make a freestanding steel wall for the entrance to the art department campus, California State University , Fullerton , California .
“Rondo” commissioned for area in front of an office building, 110 East 59th Street , New York . Later placed in front of the 127 East 58th Street branch of the New York Public Library.  

1970
Created “Kepaakala (Sun Disc)”, commissioned by the Financial Center of the Pacific, Honolulu , Hawaii .

1971
“Odyssey I”, included in the “11 Biennale Middelheim Antwerpen”, Open Air Museum of Sculpture Middelheim, Antwerp and acquired by the museum.

1972
Installed a stainless steel column at the Sunrise Mall, Massapequa , New York . Alexander Lieberman, Sylvia Stone and Stanley Landsman also installed sculptures.
“Cube ‘72”, installed in front of Guild Hall, East Hampton , New York .
“Memorial Cube”, installed at Connecticut College, new London, Connecticut, in honor of Dene Laib Ulin, Class of 1952.

1973
Began the installation of “5in1” at Police Plaza , New York .

1974
With John Chamberlain, Dimitri Hadzi and others participated in the Oregon International Sculpture Symposium, which was sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and organized by Sculpture Associates in Eugene . Constructed an outdoor sculpture with the assistance of young sculptors.
Commissioned by the architect Minoru Yamasaki to create a brass ark, a walnut wall to stand behind it and a menorah in brass for Temple Beth El, Bloomfield Hills , Michigan .

1975
“Odyssey II” acquired by Yale university, New Haven , Connecticut .
Received the Fine Art Award for “5 in 1”, One Police Plaza , New York , from the Design in Steel Award Program, American Iron and Stell Institute, Washington , D.C.

1977
A Holocaust memorial commissioned by the Jewish Community Center of Greater Buffalo, Getzville , New York .
“Hammarskjold”, constructed at Hammarskjold Plaza , Second Avenue and 47th Street , New York . Acquired by the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York (1978).
Second solo exhibition at Knoedler gallery, New York , featuring works constructed with structural steel and inspired by the engineering design of the inner structure of “5 in 1”.  

1978
Transcending, above, acquired by The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.
Participated in a panel discussion, “Fifty Years of American Sculpture”, Sculpture Center , New York .

1980
Constructed and installed “Element ‘H’ x 5” in the gymnasium of P.S. 1 (The Institute for Art and Urban Resources), Queens , New York . The work was later placed in the courtyard where it stayed for five years.
“Steelpark” installed at 80th Street and First Avenue , New York , Commissioned by Jack Resnick & Sons, builders.
Solo exhibition of Maquette’s and installation of “Cranbrook Ingathering”, Cranbrook Academy of Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills , Michigan . Spoke at Cranbrook on the making and enlarging of Maquette’s.
Lectured on contemporary sculpture, Empire State Mall, Albany , New York .

1981
Constructed “Bronco”, atrium of an office building, 1010 Lamar, Houston , Texas .

1982
Commissioned by the City of New York to design and execute the annual Doris C. Freedman Award, given by the mayor to a person or organization for significantly enriching the public environment. Executed fifteen copies of the brass Maquette for “ Alamo ”, which Freedman had installed at Astor Place (see 1967).

1983
Commissioned by the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority to make a 14 foot high version of Odyssey for a public park next to Metropolitan Hospital .
Designed a version of “Steelpark” as a commission for the Culmer Metro-Rail Station, Miami .
Participated on a panel about public sculpture, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana and on a panel about new sculpture, along with Louise Nevelson, Carl Andre and moderator Sam Hunter, Princeton University , New Jersey .
Commissioned by collector Martin Z. Margulies to construct a CorTen steel cube. Installed originally at Grove Isle, Miami. Currently on loan to Florida International University, Miami.
Participated in “Design in America: The Cranbrook Vision 1925-1950”, which traveled to The Detroit Institute of Arts (1983-84); The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, (1984); Suomen Taideteollisuusyhdistys, Helsinki, Finland (1984); Musee des arts decoratifs, Paris (1984-85); Victoria and Albert Museum, London (1985).

1984
Created a bronze disc, commissioned by Florence Knoll Bassett for the lobby of Southeast National Bank, Miami , Florida .
Received an Award in Art and participated in “Work by Newly Elected Members and Recipients of Honors and Awards”, American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, New York.
Performed in Ubu Repertory Theater’s production of Pablo Picasso’s play Catch Desire by the Tail, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. The cast included: Beverly Pepper, June Wayne, Philippine de Rothschild, David Hockney, Louise Bourgeois, Red Grooms, Francoise Gilot and Jack Youngerman.

1986
Participated in a sculpture exhibition at Millesgarden, Lidingo, Sweden

1987
Adopt a Monument, a program sponsored by the Municipal Art Society, New York , led to the refurbishing of “ Alamo ” by Lippincott, the fabrication company in North Haven , Connecticut , that originally fabricated the sculpture.

1988
Joined Galerie Denise Rene, Paris and had a solo exhibition.
“Element ‘H’ x 5” and four other sculptures moved to Top Gallant, a private sculpture farm in Pawling, New York, belonging to art dealer Andre Emmerich. Those works and others that followed remained on long-term loan.
Installation of “Pass-Thru”, Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York.

1989
East Hampton Village Design Review Board resolved that no additional work besides Rosenthal’s “Cube’72”, placed in front of Guild Hall in 1972, could be installed on Main Street .
Received honorary doctorate from Hofstra University, which commissioned “Pass-Thru” in 1988.
Installed “Indiana Totem”, atrium, Indiana University Art Museum, Bloomington. Made horizontally in Rosenthal’s studio.

1990
Works from two series, “J.S. Bach Fugue” and “J.S. Bach Variations”, shown at Maxwell Davidson Gallery, New York; Cranbrook Academy of Art Museum, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan; Indiana University Art Museum, Bloomington (1991).

1991
Commissioned by collector Kirk Landon to construct a bench, Coral Gables, Florida.
Halina Rosenthal passed away after a long illness. The Rosenthals had been married for forty-five years.

1994
Solo exhibition at Jaffe, Baker, Blau Gallery, Boca Rotan, Florida.
Participated in a sculpture exhibition, Hakone Open-Air Museum, Japan. The museum acquired a bronze cube.

1995
Married Cynthia Dillon.

1997
Solo exhibition at Dorothy Blau Gallery, Miami.
Installed “J.S. Bach Variation #9”, Ravinia Music Festival Park, Highland Park, Illinois.

1998
Two large sculptures, “Cube’97” and a Steel Bench, acquired by Harry Wilks, founder of Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park, Hamilton, Ohio.
“House of the Minotaur” acquired by Laumeier Sculpture Park & Museum, St. Louis , Missouri .
A Bench purchased by American Bankers Assurance Co., Miami, for the outside of its building.

1999
“Odyssey II”, acquired by Yale University in 1975, installed in sculpture garden of Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven , Connecticut .

2000
Participated in the exhibition “Welded! Sculpture of the Twentieth Century”, Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York.

2001
Moved to South Hampton. New York.

2005
Tony Rosenthal's "Alamo", 1967 is unveiled by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg in a ceremony marking it's return after being refurbished by the City's Parks Department.

2006
Tony Rosenthal's "Alamo", 1967 was the Final Visual Clue on 12/10/06 CBS The Amazing Race Season Finale

2009
Tony Rosenthal died at the age of 94 in his Southampton, NY home with his Loving wife Cynthia at his side on July 28, 2009

 

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