Artist: Bill Mack
Title: Radically Cool (James Dean)
Medium: Acrylic, Oil And Urethane on the Original Metal Hollywood Sign
Image Size: 48" x 20"
Frame Size: 63" x 35"
Inscription: Signed on front, titled on back
Condition: Very good quality overall
Documentation: Includes gallery certificate of authenticity
Known primarily for his popular relief sculptures, Bill Mack is enamored with the golden age of Hollywood. In 2007, he purchased the original Hollywood sign from its warehouse location. The original sign was constructed in 1923 and read "Hollywood Land" before undergoing a series of updates and repairs. It was ultimately removed and replaced by the current sign in 1978.
Bill Mack extensively restored the original sign and used it as a canvas to capture the likeness of Hollywood's golden era celebrities including Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, and James Dean. Mack is renowned for his extremely lifelike works of art, and his realistic style fits seamlessly with the history and importance of the artifact.
The composition of "Radically Cool" shows James Dean's unmatched ease through his casual posture and nonchalant expression. Mack simultaneously captures the aspirational yet relatable aura of celebrity. The intentionally weathered Hollywood sign canvas is rife with holes and peeling edges that help maintain its authenticity and contributes to the overall aged aesthetic of the piece. The composition is finished with the word "Hollywood" imprinted vertically down the side as a nod to the original signage.
Mack's "Radically Cool (James Dean)" is one of nine original paintings that is signed on the front and titled on the back. It also includes a document from the artist attached to the back that describes the history of the Hollywood Sign project and a certificate of authenticity from Modern Artifact.
About Bill Mack
A sculptor with no mentors, Bill Mack is celebrated for his unique technique of relief sculpting. Working in the rarest of art forms, he is regarded as one of the finest sculptors in the world today.
Operating as a designer for a company that specialized in bronze relief tablets at a young age served as a turning point for Bill Mack to decide to start working exclusively as a freelance relief sculptor. Over the years, he has developed a unique technique that is nowhere to be taught, achieving a worldwide following. His work combines low and high relief, incised lines and various elements in the full-round. Mostly working in traditional cast bronze, he has also gained experience with more modern substances such as resins, urethanes, epoxies, silicones, and acrylics, developing a great deal of technical knowledge to compliment his unique talents.
In 2007, Bill Mack and his company Erin Taylor Editions purchased the metal from the Original Hollywood Sign which resided in the Hollywood Hills from 1923 until 1978 when it was deemed irreparable. Mack used the historic metal as a canvas to paint portraits of distinguished stars of Hollywood. During this process, he decided to restore the 45-foot H from the Original Sign metal, which he finally succeeded in 2012. For these efforts, he was awarded Certificate of Recognition by Herb Wesson and Tom LaBonge of the Los Angeles City Council.
Embodying the grace of a body in motion, the work of Bill Mack engages the viewer, turning him into a participant of the drama unfolding before his eyes. Leaving the background and extending into space, his works can be described as emotional elegance turned into sculpture.
Bill Mack was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1944 where he continues to live and work. His work is part of a range of private collections, including the ones of former Presidents Clinton, Ford and Reagan and actors such as Sylvester Stallone, Elizabeth Taylor, and Tony Curtis.