Wilfrid Wood’s New Yorkers

For The New Yorker’s recent style issue, sculptor Wilfrid Wood was commissioned to make a series of plasticine portraits of some of the city’s most fashionable types

For The New Yorker’s recent style issue, sculptor Wilfrid Wood was commissioned to make a series of plasticine portraits of some of the city’s most fashionable types…

Wood recreated a selection of stylish New Yorkers in the modelling clay, complete with hats, scarves – such as the multi-coloured number, above – and accessories.

The sculptures were then photographed by Stephen Lenthall and used as spot illustrations throughout the issue.

While plasticine enables Wood to work on pieces very quickly (it can even be painted, though the examples in the New Yorker series are not), it’s unlikely that these particular heads will be kept as the material dents very easily and is tricky to keep dust-free, he says.

Instead the works will be reborn – “I’ll chomp up the heads and turn them into something else.”

Known for his work in Super Sculpey clay, which has to be baked and heavily sanded, working in plasticine also offers Wood the chance to work more spontaneously.

With the new heads, he says, he “hope[s] that what they lacked in fine finish they gained in freshness and immediacy”.

More of Wood’s work is at wilfridwood.com.

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