Charlie Kaplan will be giving a Brown Bag Lunch presentation on Friday, January 29 at noon. His talk is entitled “The Tradition of Marble: How it is Quarried and the Culture of the Artisans—A View from Carrara with Sculptor Charlie Kaplan.”

Charlie Kaplan is a Los Angeles based sculptor whose work focuses on non-representational, three-dimensional forms. Shortly after graduating from the University of California, Berkeley, Kaplan found an abandoned piece of Douglas fir in a parking lot, which he brought home and instinctively started carving. After a decade of experimenting with different types of wood and other material, Kaplan enrolled in the University of California, Los Angeles Extension and took sculpting courses in stone, alabaster, and marble. Starting in 1995, and continuing for an additional five years, Kaplan attended a month-long marble sculpting course in Pietrasanta, Italy, taught by artist Lynne Streeter. The experience of carving marble in a town not more than ten miles from Carrara, known for its marble quarries, was the proverbial tipping point for Kaplan. In 2009, the city of Pietrasanta installed one of his sculptures on the public pier. In 2013, Kaplan had a solo exhibition at PYO Gallery in Los Angeles.

At Bard Graduate Center, Kaplan will discuss a variety of stones and their properties in relation to how this natural resource is used in architecture and for decorative purposes, including sculpture. Kaplan will explore the culture of both the marble quarries and the community of artisans in Carrara from historical and contemporary perspectives.