Anthony Howe – The International Award “Lorenzo Il Magnifico” from the President
Anthony Howe’s kinetic sculptures
Born in 1954 in Salt Lake City (Utah, USA), Anthony Howe attended the Taft School in Watertown, Connecticut, followed by Cornell University and the Skowhegan School of Sculpture and Painting.
He is regarded a strikingly innovative protagonist of the contemporary art scene for his mesmerizing wind-driven sculptures. With his Lucea he impressed actors and audience at the 2017 Academy Awards ceremony. One year earlier he had amazed with the athletes, spectators and dignitaries attending the Olympic Games opening ceremony in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with the cauldron made on commission of the steering committee. Moving gracefully yet powerfully, that pinnacle of artistic achievement mirrored Howe’s vision ‘to replicate the sun using movement to mimic its pulsing energy and reflection of light’.
With his dazzling kinetic sculptures coming to life in his home studio and sculpture park on Orcas Island since the late 1980s, after distinguishing himself as a watercolourist, Anthony Howe boasts having his creations shown in public spaces around the world, including Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, Southern California, and New York City. Present in many prestigious collections, these stunning artworks powered by the wind appear to be like stars, vortexes, or ‘living beings’ – as art historian Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti would define them.
Like Azlon (2017), most of these kinetic sculptures, spinning and spiralling harmoniously in intricate patterns at the slightest breeze, are made from stainless steel and fibreglass which are bent, contorted and hammered into lightweight curvilinear pieces. High-tech textiles for windsurfing, however, might also be used by the artist in the future for new projects.
Anthony Howe: creativity through art and science.
‘The wind is something that I have always loved to be around, and be in, and play in’, affirmed Howe, whose artistic research for beauty blown with the wind overlaps with experimentation grounded in scientific knowledge and technology of our time. His approach appears to be reminiscent of Leonardo da Vinci’s vision of human life, creativity, and genius in harmony with Nature and its fundamental forces. It may thus be worth remembering a 1487 drawing with notes by Leonardo in the Codex Atlanticus (f. 675r) at the Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan, as showing how that great Master of the Renaissance imagined an anemometer as an instrument for measuring the speed of the wind equipped with another device for indicating its direction.
The International Award “Lorenzo Il Magnifico” from the President
The Lorenzo il Magnifico Special Award from the President of the Florence Biennale for lifetime achievement will be bestowed to American sculptor Anthony Howe ‘as a recognition to his wonderful art production resulting from a creative process through which he has revived Leonardo da Vinci’s legacy. His kinetic wind sculptures, in fact, are pinnacles of artistic achievement reached through the study of nature, experimentation, and invention’.
Anthony Howe at Florence Biennale
The artist will be guest of honour of XIIth Florence Biennale. On that occasion a work of his, possibly the outcome of a new project to be first displayed in Italy, may be exhibited at the Fortezza da Basso.