This Exhibition Has Ended

April 24, 2015
August 30, 2015
Hirsch Lecture Lobby

In celebration of Cornell's Sesquicentennial—as well as the 50th Reunion of the Class of 1965—the Johnson Museum is highlighting the work of Jack Squier, MFA 1952, who was appointed Professor of Sculpture in 1965 and is now Professor Emeritus in the Department of Art. [Jack Squier passed away on December 31, 2015.] Squier’s fascination with ancient Western and Eastern cultures, along with his deep interest in experimenting, combined to create his unique sculptural style in many media, including bronze, wood, and polyester resin.

In 1993, the Museum held a forty-year retrospective of Squier’s work, which is in numerous public collections including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. This special installation celebrates the recent gift of one of Squier’s carved wood sculptures, Blind Animal II, to the Johnson Museum’s permanent collection.

Squier taught and mentored countless Cornell students over three decades, becoming one of the university’s most respected faculty members. The only prerequisite he set for admission to his introductory sculpture classes was that prospective students show a genuine interest in the arts. By encouraging intellectual growth through art practice and experiential learning, Squier influenced students far beyond the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP) and demonstrated his belief that “the sciences make life possible; the arts make it worthwhile.”

Squier and his wife Jane made a lasting impact on campus through their dedication to students and their love of entertaining in their Cayuga Heights home, which they designed and built themselves. Their innate sense of style and love of art epitomized “cool” to their contemporaries, students, and faculty alike.

In addition to his teaching, Squier’s long-lasting contributions to the university include the historic landmark designation of The Foundry, the oldest structure on campus used as an artistic workplace; his dedication to providing students the opportunity to experience culture abroad through the establishment of the Cornell in Rome program; and the installation of a concrete sculpture garden created by his students at Cornell Plantations [now Cornell Botanic Gardens] in the early 1960s.

This exhibition was organized by Lee Rice ’16 with the assistance of Stephanie Wiles, the Richard J. Schwartz Director of the Johnson Museum.

Watch Simply Squier (45 min.), created in honor of Squier's retirement from Cornell after nearly fifty years of teaching sculpture.