ART: FUNK AND CHIC

CONTRASTING ROUGH-HEWN BLOCKS WITH SLEEKLY SOARING CURVES, BRANCUSI'S SCULPTURES ACHIEVE A HEALING WHOLENESS

THIRTY YEARS BEFORE his death in 1957, there had ceased to be any doubt of Constantin Brancusi's status as a modernist master. He devoted a long life to distilling extremes of formal perfection from a narrow range of motifs. This perfection is never frozen: it always contains some organic character, an affinity to life and therefore to change. "I never seek what to make a pure or abstract form," Brancusi said. "Timelessness,'' "wholeness,'' "essence,'' "aliveness": such words inescapably recur in what has been written about him over the past 70 or 80 years. They are well-worn tokens, rubbed smooth by use,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!