The Norman Rockwell of American Sculpture
J. Seward Johnson Jr., American realist
"Realism has the capacity to reach everyone; there is no age barrier, no culture barrier. As the breadth of communication expands, so does the potency of a particular work.” J. Seward Johnson Jr.
J. Seward Johnson Jr., born in 1930, is the grandson of the founder of Johnson & Johnson Co. After a career in painting, Johnson turned to sculpting in 1968. Thirty-eight years later, Johnson has designed and created more than 250 life-size bronze sculptures in countries throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. Johnson’s sculptures can be found in private collections and museums such as the Rockefeller Center and the Liberty plaza in New York, the Les Halles in Paris, and Via Condotti in Rome. He also has works on display in Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington D.C. and London.
“I use my art to convince you of something that isn’t real. You laugh at yourself because you were taken in, and in that change of your perception, you become vulnerable to the piece and intimate with it in a certain way.”
J. Seward Johnson, Jr.
The “Man-on-the-Street” series began in the 1980s and continues as Johnson creates new ways to express his subjects.
The City of Carmel purchased life-size sculptures for Carmel’s Arts and Design District in Old Town and Carmel City Center. The sculptures, all part of the “Man-on-the-Street” series, include:
“There, Now You Can Grow” – A little girl, with a straw hat hanging from her neck and wearing overall, waters nearby flowers.
Located next to The World’s Smallest Children’s Art Gallery at 1st Avenue NW and Main Street
“First Ride” – A young, smiling girl takes off on a bike as her father watches and lets go for the first time.
Located at the intersection of Main Street and the Monon Trail.
“Confirming Predictions” – A gray-haired businessman, focused on his newspaper, sits comfortably on a bench.
Located along Main Street just East of the Monon Trail in front of ArtSplash Gallery at 111 W. Main Street, Suite 140.
“Sidewalk Concert” – A street musician closes his eyes as he plays a sweet song on his violin, leaving his case open for spare change.
Located in front of Carmel Music Center along Main Street just West of Range Line Road.
“Holding Out,” depicts a woman carrying a bag of groceries in one arm and two additional shopping bags in the other.
The sculpture is located on the sidewalk in front of Joe’s Butcher Shop and Fish Market, on the south side of Main Street between 1st Ave. SW and the Monon Trail.
"Who’s in Charge"
A young boy in overalls and hat sitting on a man’s shoulders
Located in front of Tina’s Traditional Old English Kitchen at 30 N. Range Line Road, one block north of the Main Street & Range Line Road intersection.
A woman holding a Carmel Arts & Design District shopping bag wearing a jacket and scarf while a man also in a jacket is behind her holding an umbrella over the two of them with the element of a wind gust against their clothing.
Located along Range Line Road, a few blocks south of Main Street, right outside of the Indiana Design Center.
"The Right Light"
An artist at work painting his view of the Carmel Arts & Design District archways
Located on the northwest corner of the roundabout intersection at W. Main Street and 4th Avenue.
"Things To Do"
A business woman sitting on a bench with a pen and notebook while deep in thought with her sunglasses in hand.
Located on southeast corner of Range Line Road and Main Street, right outside of California Closets and ReStyled Furniture.
"Oh, It’s You, Welcome!"
A police officer greeting and waving to passersby
Located on the northeast segment of the Main Street & Monon Greenway intersection.
A soldier embraces a nurse with a big kiss, mimicking one of the most famous photos in history, the “VJ Day Kiss,” snapped by photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt to commemorate the victory over Japan, with the end of WWII on August 14th, 1945
Located on Main Street just east of Range Line Road near Carmel Clay Public Library’s Digital Media Lab.
"Ambassador of the Streets"
A woman dressed in a red business suit walking her dog
Located in front of All Things Carmel.
"One Man’s Search"
A man wearing a Carmel High School sweater sits on a bench reading a book
Located between Vitality Bowls and Canine Cloud Nine.
A big sister takes the time to help a younger sister tie her shoes
Located in front of House of Z.
A young child in overalls and red shoes sits on the ground, immersed in reading a book
Located at Carmel City Center, on the ground level off of S. Range Line Road, north of the parking garage entrance.
In addition to the “Man on the Street series,” these public art pieces can also be found on display in the Carmel Arts & Design District:
A whimsical piece entitled "Eternal Spring,” created by artist Jerry Joslin, depicts a dancing woman surrounded by flowers.
Located at the corner of W. Main Street and 3rd Ave NW
A mural designed and painted by local students from Carmel High School
Located on the west side of the Carmel Old Town Antique Mall building, 38 W. Main Street
“Public art is an important aspect to a city’s quality of life and these life-size sculptures are a wonderful addition to the city of Carmel and Carmel Arts and Design District.”
Mayor James Brainard
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