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Steel Sculptures

The art of creating sculpture out of steel has greatly evolved since its initial popularity in the 19th century. Though steel sculptures are revered for their durability, sculptors often face the technical challenge of cleanly joining the steel planes along their narrow edges, which has led to several developments in the technique over the centuries.

In the late 19th century, academic sculptors used iron engineering to make joints in their works by bolting and riveting. During World War I, artists such as Picasso began to experiment with metal assemblies using wires and bolts without industrial techniques.

By World War II, David Smith and Anthony Caro adopted electric arc-welding of steel and small factory production methods. This is more reflective of today’s artists working with steel, who often rely on steel firms to produce their ideas.


Quick Facts

  • Sculptors working with steel today often look to advances in industrial metallurgy and engineering for updates in their techniques
  • Alexander Calder, one of the most revered contemporary sculptors, works mostly with steel and increasingly relies on the assistance of metal working shops such as Segre's Ironworks
  • Electric arc welding made the cutting and joining of steel possible during World War I

Recommended Items at Auction

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David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
Oct 13, 6:00 PM EDT
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
by Kodner Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
Oct 13, 6:00 PM EDT
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
by Kodner Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
Oct 13, 6:00 PM EDT
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
by Kodner Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
Oct 13, 6:00 PM EDT
David Hayes (1931 - 2013)
by Kodner Galleries
Est: $800- $1,200
$4000 Bids
Meredyth Sparks, Untitled
Oct 13, 11:00 AM CDT
Meredyth Sparks, Untitled
by Wright
Est: $1,000- $1,500
$5000 Bids
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MARI FUNAKI (1950-2010), Container 1997
Oct 12, 6:30 PM AEDT
MARI FUNAKI (1950-2010), Container 1997
by Menzies
Est: AUD10,000- AUD15,000
AUD10,0000 Bids
Patricia Govezensky- Original Painting on Cutout Steel "Hommage to Takashi (Mini Series)"
Oct 12, 10:00 AM PDT
Patricia Govezensky- Original Painting on Cutout Steel "Hommage to Takashi (Mini Series)"
by Robinhood Auctions
Est: $2,800- $3,500
$4500 Bids
Patricia Govezensky- Original Painting on Cutout Steel "Love Music"
Oct 13, 10:00 AM PDT
Patricia Govezensky- Original Painting on Cutout Steel "Love Music"
by Robinhood Auctions
Est: $4,200- $5,250
$6500 Bids
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Janet Indick, Jacob's Ladder, Painted Steel
Oct 15, 10:00 AM EDT
Janet Indick, Jacob's Ladder, Painted Steel
by RoGallery
Est: $10,000- $15,000
$7,5000 Bids
Michael Anderson Untitled
Oct 22, 10:00 AM MST
Michael Anderson Untitled
by Larsen Art Auction
Est: $1,000- $2,000
$5000 Bids
Simon Gaiger MRSS, British b.1965 - Untitled;
Oct 12, 11:00 AM BST
Simon Gaiger MRSS, British b.1965 - Untitled;
by Roseberys
Est: £400- £600
£2800 Bids
Brian Wall, High Noon
Oct 20, 11:00 AM PDT
Brian Wall, High Noon
by Los Angeles Modern Auctions
Est: $7,000- $10,000
$4,5000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Steel Sculptures


Kodner Galleries

Kodner Galleries

Robinhood Auctions

Robinhood Auctions

Roseberys

Roseberys

Los Angeles Modern Auctions

Los Angeles Modern Auctions