George Stanley (sculptor)

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George Stanley (April 26, 1903 – 1973)[1] is an American sculptor. He designed the Academy Award of Merit, or Oscar, as well as sculpting the Muse Statue at the Hollywood Bowl.

Early life[edit]

Stanley was born in Iota, Acadia Parish, Louisiana in the year 1903. He then moved as a child to California and spent his youth there in the city of Watsonville. Upon graduation from high school Stanley proceeded to study sculpture at Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles from 1923 to 1926. He also taught at this school from 1926-1942. Stanley also taught briefly at the Santa Barbara School of the Arts. During his life he completed many public arts works including work for schools such as the Long Beach Polytechnic High School, as well as works for private patrons.

Sculpting career[edit]

Stanley sculpted a statue of Sir Isaac Newton located at the Griffith Observatory, completed in 1934. This statue was part of a larger work known as the Astronomer's Monument. This work was a public project funded by the PWAP. Consequently, the work was signed "PWAP", with none of the five artists contributing to it receiving individual recognition. It was supervised by Archibald Gardner. Stanley designed the Oscar award based on an original sketch by Cedric Gibbons. It was first awarded in 1929. Stanley sculpted the Sculpture of the Muse of Music, Dance and Drama located at the Hollywood Bowl. Completed in 1940, this sculpture is carved from granite and stands twenty-two feet tall and two-hundred feet wide. It is Art Deco in style and serves as a retaining wall for the amphitheater.[2]


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  2. ^ "George Stanley, "Muse of Music, Dance and Drama"". USAD Art Resource Guide:Art of the Great Depression. The United States Academic Decathlon: 55. 2010.