PP154 Harry Bertoia Sculpture: Monumental, Sounding & Bronzes

Webinar Description

Harry Bertoia’s abstract metal sculptures range from three-inch metal “cookies” to forty-foot bronze panels in commercial venues. His oeuvre is remarkably broad, but samples of the most common forms of his art will be examined. His philosophy and sources of inspiration, intertwined with his work, will be explained, giving insight into the themes behind the metal. Unauthorized copies of the sounding sculptures are prevalent so we’ll show you how to distinguish the authentic tonals from the copies. Ideally, after this presentation you’ll have a good idea of what is Bertoia and what is not. The caveat is that Celia, his daughter, still occasionally sees pieces that are confirmed but new-to-her Bertoias! This is the last of three related Bertoia webinars.

Webinar Audience

Anyone involved with post-war and modern art, sculpture specialists.

Continuing Education (CE) Information

This webinar will award 1.2 CE hours.

Topics Covered

Brief Background of Harry Bertoia

  • Italy
  • Detroit
  • Cranbrook Academy of Art

Monumental Commissioned Artwork

  • General Motors Technical Center, Warren, Michigan
  • Dulles International Airport, Washington D.C.
  • St John’s Church, Cincinatti, Ohio 
  • Seattle 1st National Bank (recently divided into individual parts), Seattle, Washington
  • Philadelphia Civic Center (now at Woodmere Museum), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • 50+ commissioned architectural sculptures

Bushes and Dandelions

  • Sunbursts developed into dandelions
  • Florence Knoll-Bassett dandelion
  • Bushes inspired by nature
  • Spill casts
  • Smaller pieces, melt press, wire, bronze forms

Sounding sculptures

  • Originated from a wire experiment
  • Tonals
  • Gongs and singing bars
  • Sonambient Barn Collection

Knock-offs vs. Authentic

  • Tonals
  • Sprays


Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Inform others about the history and work of Bertoia
  • Demonstrate techniques and materials unique to Bertoia
  • Identify Bertoia sculpture compared to unauthorized copies
  • Define Sonambient and sounding sculpture terms 

Celia Bertoia

Celia Bertoia, youngest daughter of Harry Bertoia, grew up in Pennsylvania, spent decades in Boulder, Colorado in the real estate market, then owned a race timing company in Bozeman, Montana. Celia is currently the founder and director of the Harry Bertoia Foundation, a 501 (c)(3), anchored in St George, Utah. She authored the Life and Work of Harry Bertoia: the Man, the Artist, the Visionary (Schiffer, 2015). She is also an accredited appraiser with ASA, specializing in post war art. Her passion is to further the legacy of Harry Bertoia.


Webinar Recording
Select the "View Recording" button to begin.  |  60 minutes
Select the "View Recording" button to begin.  |  60 minutes
PP154 Certificate
1.20 CE credits  |  Certificate available
1.20 CE credits  |  Certificate available