Friday, February 5, 2016

National Civic Art Society Hails Victory for Classical Art in the National WWI Memorial Competition

The National Civic Art Society is delighted to report that the winning design in the competition for the National World War I Memorial is a victory for classical commemorative art! 

The dominant feature of the design consists in traditional figurative sculptures by the talented New York-based artist Sabin Howard. The memorial plan, co-designed by architect Joseph Weishaar, contains large-scale bronze bas reliefs as well as a central sculpture of three soldiers firing a cannon. The memorial will be located in Pershing Park on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C.

This victory comes after NCAS promoted classical entries in an article forForbes as well as at a panel discussion we hosted at the Army and Navy Club in D.C. Among the speakers at that event was the vice chairman of the World War I Centennial Commission, the body overseeing the creation of the memorial. He was a non-voting member of the competition jury.

NCAS can take special pride in this win for classical art: As the Huffington Post reported, Sabin Howard entered the competition at NCAS’s encouragement. 

Congrats, Sabin!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Sabin Howard’s Anatomy for Artists: Structure and Anatomy of the Head BEGINNING September 8, 2015 8 PM NYC time -

Structure and Anatomy of the Head is an intensive 5 session webinar that teaches the professional artist the critical foundations necessary to accurately construct the human head and face. This webinar uses a three-dimensional approach; it is geared toward the sculptor or draughtsman. The course will share the underlying organizational lessons of anatomy and design from the Old Masters with artists committed to mastering the human head. 
Structure and Anatomy of the Head takes the formidable task of how to organize the complexity and hierarchy of all the smaller parts within the life model’s head, from the skeleton to the surface tension of bones and flesh beneath the skin. An in-depth analysis of each of the features, and how they are put together within the whole head, will be thoroughly investigated. The skull and its subcutaneous landmarks, the muscles, structural forms, subcutaneous fat, cartilage and tendons and ligaments around each of the facial features, will be explained to the smallest detail. This knowledge enables expression, force, and luminosity in an artist’s work. 

With these tools, you will be able to analyze and reproduce the tremendous amount of detail and specificity of this particular, crucial part of the human figure. This webinar will give you the understanding of how the skull and all its parts are put together and how to bring life force energy to your art in its translation from life. 

The knowledge from this class will change how you see the model through portraiture. It will ultimately increase your ability and creativity as an artist. This knowledge is organized by aesthetics and will give you a step-by-step methodology as to how to proceed through the framework and foundation to a highly detailed and finished form full of life force energy. 

Five Tuesdays @ 8:00 PM NYC time beginning September 8.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Sabin Howard Webinars; Intensive Figure Construction and Anatomy for Artists;

I would like to announce the beginning of a new webinar series on drawing and designing the figure.

Here is the link

Friday, January 23, 2015






I stood between the columns of Canova's Tempio in Possagno, looking out over the Veneto countryside. It was a cool July evening just before sunset, when the light is fluid and perfect and everything looks like it’s taken from a Renaissance painting. The light shone a glorious golden hue on the columns and the sky arced overhead, brilliant and azure. It struck me that I was part of an incredibly beautiful scene.

            It was far more than a visual experience. The energy of the place seeped into my bones and a sense of unlimited possibility and peace swept over me. I felt that I was part of something greater than myself.

            Earlier that day I had spent hours alone in the Canova Museum, carefully studying and absorbing the energy of being surrounded by a lifetime of work created by the neoclassical sculptor Canova. His sculptures emanate a sense of correctness; I knew that I’d been guided there for some greater reason than to be a tourist in Italy gawking at the art.

            Canova's Tempio was the focal point of the surrounding community. When it was built at the highest point of the town where Canova was born, the Tempio was a powerful representation of how the people of Possagno wanted to be portrayed. It spoke of the greatness of their culture. It conveyed pride and unity. It was a magnificent architectural sculpture that brought the community together, uplifting and transforming them, just as it uplifted and transformed me.

            When I returned to New York, I vowed that I would bring the same transformational feeling to my next project, one that would serve and be the focal point for a community today, just as Canova’s had been.

            So I got to work on the drawings to put the concept into a visual idea. I was inspired by the Renaissance concept of an entrance into a better world, the divine world, and communion with God. In those times, it was thought that one could only reach this glorious state of being in the afterlife.

            I decided to take this traditional theme and shape it to fit our contemporary times.        Rather than focusing on the afterlife, I decided to focus on this life and all the possibility it holds in each moment. In my drawings, the portal or doorway is on earth. Stepping through this doorway, you are still on earth. This is a way of stating that the divine can be found on earth, as I experienced in Italy when I realized that I was truly in heaven here and now, at this precise moment “now” in my life. My trip to Possagno helped me see that the perception of reality and possibilities is created by what I believe. What I see is driven by my beliefs.

            In my drawings for the community project, a female figure stands on each side of an open portal. They are clothed, and their drapery travels over their bodies in a spiral movement, just like a DNA helix or the cochlear form that recurs everywhere in nature, from shells to galaxies. That spiral repeats in their gestures and anatomy, which are built from an upwardly moving spiral force, and travels visually through the body. So the figures are constructed, proportioned, and structured to mimic the incredibly brilliant way the universe is designed.

            The gestures are chosen to represent how we can deal with our human condition. The poses and morphologyrepresent a higher level of consciousness. The body acts like an accordion compressing under the weight of gravity; the bodies are designed to show this compression. They are arced in a giant C curve. The arms press down on the heads, similar to an architectural caryatid of ancient times.

           There is a resonance with the great lineage of sculpture through time, but these figures are thoroughly modern: they carry a serene awareness of their weight. The stand leg is firmly grounded in the present while the other foot is lifted to show the potential for change and movement. There is a balance between the weight that their existence creates, with the feeling of potentiality and luminosity that they carry. The brightest parts of the figure will be their hearts because their sternums face up towards the light.

            These two sibyls, or prophets, gracefully hold the energy together like a vessel, directing the energy toward the middle of the portal. The size of the portal is also expansive in its relation to the figures, because it represents our human potential.

20 inch high figures started and in process.





Friday, December 12, 2014

Gehry/Eisenhower Polemic

I wanted to share the latest article about the Gehry/Eisenhower polemic written by my wife Traci L. Slatton: "Ongoing Chicanery with the Gehry Memorial."

Here's the link.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Daniel Maidman's New Article on Sabin Howard Figure Drawings

Thought I'd share Daniel's new article on his blog. Daniel Maidman making art and thinking about art: Art and Artists III: Forms of Beauty.

 It is a construction: Howard constructed it based on his knowledge of anatomy, and the theory of the body he has derived from that knowledge. As he puts it, "I wanted to do more experimentation with the conceptualization of the body in geometric terms, how all the parts fit together. There is a lot about the architecture of the figure being the skeleton. And the musculature being the spinning organic element. As a sculptor I am an architect working with organic form."

The energy within the figure is manifested in the spiraling organic architecture of the body. The morphology becomes a blueprint for the individual psychology of the being. It's uniqueness is created in a universal language that is understood by all because it is a representation of us as humans.

Figurative art should go beyond the rendering of the figure as if it were a still life.

These drawings are about showing a divine representation of us.