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George Segal

(American, 1924–2000)

Collective Bargaining: Out of Conflict—Accord

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Object Details

Artist

George Segal

Date

1974

Medium

Plaster

Dimensions

36 x 45 1/4 x 11 1/2 inches (91.4 x 114.9 x 29.2 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Theodore W. Kheel, Class of 1935, Law 1937

Object
Number

91.100

George Segal’s sculptures are cast from living models in plaster of Paris. Rather than casting from (…)

George Segal’s sculptures are cast from living models in plaster of Paris. Rather than casting from the internal impression of the mold, to produce an exact replica of the human model, Segal uses the plaster mold itself as his art, expressing himself via the manipulation and reconstruction of its unrefined surface. Usually figures in the round, Segal’s sculptures are known for the way they make visible the communication, or lack of communication, between people. He once said that he had a strong “interest in the confrontation and/or dialogue between two people,” and this can be seen in Collective Bargaining, one of his few examples of relief sculpture. This work was commissioned by Theodore Kheel, the prominent New York labor attorney, patron of Segal, and advocate of collective bargainingÑa negotiating process in which both labor and management sit down together to discuss their problems and possible solutions. Collective Bargaining depicts Floyd “Red” Smith, the leader of the International Association of Machinists of the AFL-CIO from 1969 to 1977, on the left, and Elmer T. Klassen, the former president of the American Can Company, on the right. (From “A Handbook of the Collection: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art,” 1998)

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