The Howard Whalen Sculpture Garden, a non-profit organization, is truly unique.  Nothing like it or its contents exist elsewhere.  In our age of huge institutions and vast multi-national corporations investing billions in arrays of art, The Howard Whalen Sculpture Garden represents an antidote:  The lasting truth and power of one individual idea which held complete conviction for Howard Whalen.

The Howard Whalen Sculpture Garden

is a permanent living memorial exhibition. The largest single collection of works by Howard Whalen, who exhibited nationally, and lived and worked in Sierra Madre. His studio is part of the garden, and exhibits many of his works and models. Throughout the garden are major examples of his terra cotta and other ceramic sculptures. The garden was created on the location of Whalen's original garden by a volunteer group of friends and admirers to keep his work alive and establish a permanent place of natural beauty.

Some Howard Whalen Biographical Information                    Click on a picture to see it full-size  

"You could say that my artistic approach is parallel to the fresh abstract feeling of jazz. It came out of the guts of America, from suppression, to become the most representative of all American music."  --  Howard Whalen

"Whalen was foremost a sculptor, but to those who knew him best he was also an actor, philosopher, humorist, jazz aficionado, and loyal friend. He was gentle and loving, they said, but relentlessly strong willed when it came to his deeply held beliefs." -- Lizanne Fleming Pasadena Weekly, August 17, 1989

"I think the essence of beauty lies in the nature of the material. I think the artist's job is to probe the nature of the material. Not in the sense of a laboratory probe, but in the sense of a love affair.  Whether this process is, in itself, creativity, or whether creativity is an element added to this process, I'm not sure. I would like to believe that the whole human, in collaboration with the whole material, and the whole environment, begets the creative process."   --  Howard Whalen

"Whalen's art couldn't have less to do with the pop movement. His work is influenced by Henry Moore, Picasso and Klee, and his uncomplicated yet moving expressions of the human condition speak for all times." --  Carla Tomaso, Pasadena Guardian, Nov. 5, 1975

"In the family of works, he left some twinkle, some shine or scowl, but all are ever human and alive....some of the large pieces look like people, but most don't, yet somehow they all embody the experience of the race...."  --  Richard Salzberg, Sierra Madre News, 1982

The Howard Whalen Sculpture Garden on East Carter, Sierra Madre, California 



Some Howard Whalen Biographical Information

HOWARD WHALEN was born on April 28, 1913 in Detroit, Michigan. He was apprenticed to the sculptor WAYLANDE GREGORY at the Cranbrook Art Academy. Later on (1932-33) Whalen went to New Jersey and to New York as Mr. Gregory's assistant. Subsequently (1934) Whalen worked on a federal art project in Detroit and from 1937 to 1939, and taught clay modeling and sculpture at the Architectural School of the University of Michigan. After a tour of duty in the United States Army, in World War II, he moved (1946) to Sierra Madre, California, where he resided until his death. In 1952 Whalen was included in a group exhibition at the Jack Carr Gallery, South Pasadena, California with WALLY HEDRICK and DAVID SIMPSON. He also designed for the commercial pottery industry and taught sculpture in his studio.

"Most of my sculpture is done as a development of my own philosophy and language. "

Howard Whalen, April 20, 1967

News Net Home Page          Sierra Madre Arts Main Page