Woman Category: Arts
A famous figurative sculptress.
Jane DeDecker was born and raised on her family’s farm in Marengo, Iowa. Her interest in art was apparent from a young age, drawing figures on her bedroom ceiling. After graduating high school in Loveland, Colorado, she studied painting at the University of Northern Colorado, where one of her professors, who noticed her joy and skill in prorating forms and shapes, suggested she try sculpturing. Following her professor’s advice, DeDecker moved to Paris to study at the Gobelins School of Tapestry.
On her return to the US, she apprenticed at George Lundeen’s studio, mastering bronze casting techniques. Afterward, she worked with Robert Zimmerman, assisting his installments of bronze monuments. Then she opened her studio.
DeDecker became known for sculpturing human figures, especially children. As a figurative sculptor, she reveals emotional experiences that resonate with the viewer on a personal level. DeDecker’s sculptures are an outcome of extensive research, and every position, gesture, and facial expression are sculptured in a deep understanding of the subject’s life story.
Throughout four decades, DeDecker has created more than 350 original sculptures, including 175 life-size monuments placed in public spaces in more than 30 states. Among her most famous works are a series of Harriet Tubman statues, one of them resides at the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Arkansas, as well as a statue of Emily Dickinson at Converse College, Spartanburg, South Carolina, and a statue of Amelia Earhart at the Earhart Elementary School, Oakland, California.
DeDecker is also teaching sculpture in various institutes, including the Denver Arts Students League and the Loveland Arts Academy. In 1994, she became a member of the National Sculptors Guild, and since 2007, she is a Fellow of the National Sculpture Society.
In 2016 She co-founded and designed a monument of the US suffrage movement titled “Every Word We Utter.” It depicts the activists Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and her daughter Harriot Stanton Blatch, Susan B. Anthony, Ida B. Wells, and Alice Paul. Upon its installation in Washington, DC, it will be the first outdoor monument in the nation’s capital to honor and commemorate the women who fought and paved the way for the right to vote.
More Interesting Anecdotes:
- She has nine siblings.
- She has twelve nieces and nephews, who are the primary source of her inspiration.
- Her mother and sister are working with her in her studio.
- Kathie Lee Gifford, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Sugar Ray Leonard are among her collectors.
- Her mantra is an Emily Dickinson’s quote – “We buy with contrast—Pang is good.”
More About Her Legacy
* The Critics' Choice Award from the Kimball Art Museum (1997)
* Bronze Medal and Pietro & Alfrieda Montana Memorial Prize (2002)
* C. Percival Dietsch Prize for Sculpture in the Round (2008)
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One of Her Landmarks
Photo credit - Wikipedia