NATIONAL NEWS

Famed American sculptor Richard Serra, the ‘poet of iron,’ has died at 85

Mar 26, 2024, 6:48 PM

Famed American artist and sculptor Richard Serra, known for turning curving walls of rusting steel and other malleable materials into large-scale pieces of outdoor artwork that are now dotted across the world, died Tuesday at his home in Long Island, New York. He was 85.

Considered one of his generation’s most preeminent sculptors, the San Francisco native originally studied painting at Yale University but turned to sculpting in the 1960s, inspired by trips to Europe.

His death was confirmed Tuesday night by his lawyer, John Silberman, whose firm is based in New York. He said the cause of death was pneumonia.

Known by his colleagues as the “poet of iron,” Serra became world-renowned for his large-scale steel structures, such as monumental arcs, spirals and ellipses. He was closely identified with the minimalist movement of the 1970s.

Serra’s work started to gain attention in 1981, when he installed a 120-foot-long (36.5-meter-long) and 12-foot-high (3.6-meter-high) curving wall of raw steel that splits the Federal Plaza in New York City. The sculpture, called “Tilted Arc,” generated swift backlash and a fierce demand that it should be removed. The sculpture was later dismantled, but Serra’s popularity in the New York art scene had been cemented.

In 2005, eight major works by Serra measuring were installed at the Guggenheim Museum in Spain. Carmen Jimenez, the exhibition organizer, said Serra was “beyond doubt the most important living sculptor.”

Before his turn to sculpting, Serra worked in steel foundries to help finance his education at the Berkeley and Santa Barbara campuses of the University of California. He then went on to Yale, where he graduated in 1964.

National News

FILE - Turbines operate at the Block Island Wind Farm, Dec. 7, 2023, off the coast of Block Island,...

Associated Press

Blade collapse, New York launch and New Jersey research show uneven progress of offshore wind

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) — Three events Wednesday highlighted the uneven progress of the offshore wind industry in the Northeast, including the start of a major project in New York, research aimed at preventing environmental damage in New Jersey, and a temporary shutdown of a wind farm in Massachusetts after a broken turbine blade washed […]

5 minutes ago

Associated Press

New York City councilwoman arrested for allegedly biting officer during protest, police say

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City councilwoman was arrested Wednesday for allegedly biting a police officer during a chaotic protest over the construction of a new homeless shelter in Brooklyn, police said. The councilwoman, Susan Zhuang, is being charged with assault, resisting arrest and obstruction, a police spokeswoman said. Zhuang’s office did not […]

6 minutes ago

FILE - A TV screen shows a file image of American soldier Travis King during a news program at the ...

Associated Press

Army private who fled to North Korea is in talks to resolve military charges, lawyer says

WASHINGTON (AP) — A lawyer for an Army private who fled to North Korea and was later charged with desertion and possessing sexual images of a child said Wednesday that he was in negotiations with military prosecutors to resolve the case against his client. Army Pvt. Travis King had been scheduled for a preliminary hearing […]

10 minutes ago

Associated Press

Mother of 3-year-old found dead at recycling center feared ex-husband would harm daughter

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The mother of a 3-year-old girl whose body was found in a San Francisco Bay Area recycling center over the weekend said Tuesday she feared for her daughter’s well-being whenever the child was with her ex-husband, who authorities said died by suicide and is suspected in the child’s death. San Jose […]

17 minutes ago

FILE - Visitors to Point Woronzof Park watch the sun set over Cook Inlet and Mount Susitna, on June...

Associated Press

US judge suspends Alaska Cook Inlet lease, pending additional environmental review

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A federal judge has suspended the lease stemming from a 2022 oil and gas sale in Alaska’s Cook Inlet basin after finding problems with the environmental review it was based on. U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason, in a decision Tuesday, found the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management failed in […]

34 minutes ago

Associated Press

Syrian official who oversaw prisons with widespread allegations of abuse arrested by US officials

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A former Syrian military official who oversaw prisons with widespread allegations of abuse has been arrested in Los Angeles. Samir Ousman al-Sheikh, 72, was arrested last week at Los Angeles International Airport on immigration fraud charges, specifically that he denied in his U.S. visa application that he had ever ordered any […]

44 minutes ago

Famed American sculptor Richard Serra, the ‘poet of iron,’ has died at 85