The first monograph dedicated to American sculptor John DeAndrea, one of the founding members of American Photorealism along with Duane Hanson, Chuck Close, Richard Estes or Robert Cottingham in 1970, with an introduction by Catherine Millet, an autobiography of the artist and over 200 pages of illustrations.
"Letʼs be honest: we are all still captivated once, the first time that we chance upon a hyperrealist sculpture in an exhibition. Even a frequent visitor to contemporary art galleries and museums may have experienced this mental jolt when spotting from a distance a tourist in a gaudy shirt by Duane Hanson or a stark-naked young woman by John DeAndrea; the lifelike appearance of these characters, and their incongruity, have ruptured the peaceful atmosphere of the exhibition space. (…) The artist, who should be described as being as much a painter as a sculptor, has devoted hours and hours of work to the incredibly precise rendering of the skinʼs tone and transparency, down to the appearance of the most delicate vein or the tiniest mole, pimple or freckle. (…) It seems that these sculptures bring to the exhibition space all the reticence, concentration and libidinal indifference that prevails in an academic workshop, precisely where DeAndrea says he discovered his true vocation."
Published on the occasion of the eponymous exhibition at Georges-Philippe & Nathalie Vallois Gallery, Paris, in 2023.
"A premiere sculptor of the american photo realist artist group in the 1970s, John DeAndrea established a new level of literal realism within the ongoing tradition of figurative sculpture" (The Color of Life, Ed. Roberta Panvanelli, J. Paul Getty Museum Publications and the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, 2008).
DeAndrea (born 1941 in Denver, Colorado) graduated with his Bachelor degree in (1965) from Colorado University, Boulder, continuing on to the University of Mexico for graduate school with an assistantship. At that time, Abstraction dominated the scene and was mostly all that was taught in the universities. Mesmerized by the human form, DeAndrea, at first, painted Abstract figurative work to fit in with the times, while secretly developing a body of work which debunked the mainstream, working from life casting and developing techniques to create hyper-realist sculpture. As he emerged from his schooling, and unveiled his private works, he joined OK Harris at the beginning of a new movement of realist works, exhibiting with the likes of Chuck Close, John Salt, Richard Estes, Ralph Goings, Robert Bechtel and Duane Hanson at the beginning of their careers. This movement quickly took hold, skyrocketing them to success and notoriety. Chuck Close and John DeAndrea being the first American artists to show in Paris at the Center Georges Pompidou. Live casting was a completely unexplored technique at the onset of the 1960s, at first working with traditional plaster casts, John DeAndrea was seeking a greater realism and more definition and so he developed a method of silicone casting that enabled him to capture more precise detail. This spawned a unique and innovative body of work never before seen by the world, sculptures so real that at first sight one might mistake them for a real person. Starting with fiber glass positives, evolving to Polyvinyl Resin and then onto bronze, DeAndrea's earliest works were painted with automotive paint, later evolving into acrylics and then oil. Using real human hair and cast hair, constructing his own glass eyes and painting in eyes, he has explored a variety of techniques as suited to the individual piece. Over the course of 50 years and 350 sculptures, DeAndrea has refined his technique to capture the human spirit. It is DeAndrea's incredible passion and drive to create the most realistic effects possible that has propelled mold making and sculpture in the 20th century.