Norman Legassie

Norman Legassie

Post Office Box 621

Old Lyme, Connecticut 06371

(860) 434-8436

legassie621@sbcglobal.net

One of the greatest satisfactions for figural sculptor Norman Legassie is to observe the emotional response his finished bronze figures evoke for viewers. “Sculpture should be accessible. Viewers don’t have to stand back and admire. They can touch a sculpture and feel a sense of presence with it.” His work, which ranges from large bronze figures and life-size portraits, to small, sensitive studies in wood, can be found in universities, public places, and private collections throughout the world.

ARTIST STATEMENT:

Creating a sculpture is very much like playing a game of chess. They both have an opening, the middle game and an end game. The opening, with relatively few steps, mechanically and philosophically, sets the strategy for the middle game. The middle game becomes a battleground of many gains and losses, setting up the end game for mopping up operations and the conclusion.  

Both chess and sculpture can be very time consuming, as games and art forms go.

Lastly, the process of playing the game of chess or creating a sculpture may never end, as the player or sculptor may look back in remorse after the game is over or the sculpture has been cast in bronze and unveiled on its pedestal. They always wish to go back into it to make minor or even major changes. Speaking from experience to any would-be chess player or sculptor—never mention to anyone what these changes would be.

PROFESSIONAL SCULPTOR:

Completed studies in sculpture, drawing, painting and art history at the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts in Old Lyme, Connecticut, and was awarded scholarships for three consecutive years. Further studies with master sculptors Adlai Hardin and Michael Lantz offered an enriching instruction in figurative sculpture.

Member of the faculty at the Lyme Academy from 1983 to 1988, teaching figure and portrait sculpture.

PRINCIPLE WORKS:

  • Portrait bust of Senator Thomas Dodd which stands in the entry of the Thomas J. Dodd Archives & Research Center of Judaic Studies and Oral History at the University of Connecticut at Storrs.
  • A seven-foot bronze figure of an American construction worker, completed in 1993, is a memorial to the victims of the 1987 L’Ambiance Plaza building collapse in Bridgeport, CT.
  • Portrait bust of George W. Crawford, 33 Sovereign Grand Commander, is on view at the Prince Hall Freemasonry, Philadelphia, PA.
  • Bronze figure of the American playwright Eugene O’Neill as a child, located at City Pier, New London, CT, with smaller versions installed at the Beinecke Library, Yale University, and in Shelykovo, Soviet Union, at the country estate of the 19th-century Russian dramatist, Alexander Ostrovsky.
  • Portrait bust of Susanne K. Langer, American philosopher and author, can be found at the Charles E. Shain Library, Connecticut College, New London, CT.

AFFILIATIONS:

Society of Connecticut Sculptors, Artist Member

Hudson Valley Art Association, Artist Member

AWARDS:

Career Development Grant, 1988; Lyme Academy of Fine Arts, Old Lyme, CT

The Pietro Montana Award, 1988 Exhibition; Hudson Valley Art Association, Inc., White Plains, NY

Second Annual Wintertainment, Snow Sculpture Prize 1987, Hartford, CT

First Annual Wintertainment, Snow Sculpture Prize 1986, Hartford, CT

Council of American Artists Awards, 1985 Exhibition; Academic Artists Association, Inc.; Springfield, MA

NESSA Prize for Mixed Media or Sculpture, 1985 Exhibition, New England South Shore Artists, Inc. Pawcatuck, RI

Joel Meisner Foundry Prize, 1984 Exhibition; Salmagundi Club, New York, NY

American Artist Professional League, 1984 Exhibition; Salmagundi Club, New York, NY

Luther M. Vermes Figure Award, 1984 Exhibition; Academic Artists Association, Inc., Springfield, MA

Anna Hyatt Huntington Award, 1984 Exhibition; Salmagundi Club, New York, NY

Alice B. Reynolds Memorial Award, 1983 Exhibition; Salmagundi Club, New York, NY

James Wilburt Johnston Sculpture Award, First Prize, 1983; Art of Humanity Foundation; sculpture on display at the Corcoran School of Art, Washington, DC

Walter Lantz Prize, 1983; National Sculpture Society, New York, NY

John Gregory Youth Award, 1982; National Sculpture Society, New York, NY

The National Sculpture Society Scholarship recipient: 1981, 1980, 1979

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