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Arising from a career of cinematic collaboration with artists like Gilbert & George, Philip Haas’ interests have shifted and entered into sculpture for his “Four Seasons” series, on view now through October at the New York Botanical Garden. The large sculptures are a very literal reinterpretation of 16th-century old master Giuseppe Arcimboldo’s “Four Seasons” paintings. Gigantic flowers, peaches, mushrooms, cabbage leaves, bark, and even a lone snail make up the formidable fiberglass effigies.
Haas worked with teams of sculptors, painters, and installers over several years. Every detail of Winter’s disapproving sneer to Summer’s hokey grin to Spring’s sheepish smile and Autumn’s bursting laugh have been constructed in fiberglass and installed in the courtyard of the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, no more than a few steps from a Jurassic-era palm court.
In editions of three, the creations have been installed at several prestigious venues, among them Versailles and Piazza del Duomo in Milan.