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Leonard Baskin Works Biography


Leonard Baskin was an American artist working in a range of media. Though Baskin primarily considered himself a sculptor, he remains best known for his expressive works on paper. Many of his prints and drawings served as preparatory studies for his imposing bronze and wood sculptures of animals and figures. He is especially appreciated for his unique line quality and inventive woodcut techniques which he often used to illustrate collaborative book projects, including Ted Hughes’ collection of poetry Crow.

Baskin also produced-large scale commissioned sculptures such as the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial in Washington, D.C. and the Holocaust Memorial in Ann Arbor, MI. Born on August 12, 1922 in New Brunswick, NJ, Baskin went on to study at the Yale University School of Fine Arts, where he founded the Gehenna Press. He later moved with his family to Devon, United Kingdom, where he spent much of his time with the iconic couple Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath—who famously dedicated her poem titled Sculptor to him.

Today, Baskin’s works are in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among others. Baskin died on June 3, 2003 in Northampton, MA.

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