Born in Romania, Sorel Etrog immigrated to Canada in 1963 and quickly established himself as one of North America’s pre-eminent sculptors. Known for his exploration of interconnected forms—specifically those of the human figure—Etrog developed a unique visual language, which has made him one of the most recognizable sculptors in this country. His works in bronze are delicate yet powerful manifestations of this complex consideration of form and figure.
In the early 1980s, Etrog began producing sculptures made of steel plates, which he called Steel Constructions. This period culminated with Powersoul, a monumental, ten-metre high work commissioned for the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. The work presented here, Domino (1980), superbly embodies this period thanks to its patent ingenuity and sense of balance. In 1980, he created other multi-faceted works in painted steel, such as Détente, Homage to Kurosawa, and Magic Box.
Sorel Etrog became a Member of the Order of Canada in 1994, and was made a Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French government in 1996. Etrog’s works reside in various permanent collections, including Tate Britain, the Museum of Modern Art and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Musée National d’Art Moderne in Paris, and the National Gallery of Canada. His vast, impactful career was the subject of a major retrospective at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 2013, the year before his death at the age of 80.