Hostetler, David (American, 1926 – 2015)
Signed and dated lower left: D Hostetler 2014
Inscribed on underside with a personal note from the artist: #466 “Robin”
8in h x 34in w
• An Important Main Line, PA Collection
• Acquired from Hostetler Gallery, Nantucket, MA 15 September 2014
A prolific artist for over sixty years, David Hostetler is best known for his sculptures in wood and bronze that celebrate the female form inspired by goddesses and women of historical significance.
Originally from a small town in Ohio, Hostetler later attended Indiana University and later received his MFA from Ohio University. Hostetler gained national recognition for his “American Woman Series,” a set of graceful flowing wood sculptures in indigenous hardwoods like, elm, white oak, walnut and maple. His style later progressed into more stylized female forms executed in exotic woods, such as purpleheart, ziricote, and pink ivory.
The present work, “Robin” is exemplary of Hostetler’s regard for the female form and highlights his mastery in utilizing the natural grain and texture of the golden catalpa wood as it intertwines with the sitter’s feminine curves and fluid hair. Originally commissioned as a gift, this smaller, more intimately scaled sculpture highlights Hostetler’s iconic flowing carved wood style, while capturing an evocative moment in time given as a special present from a wife to her husband.
A creative person by nature, Hostetler also worked in a variety of other medium, such as print making, ceramics, stained glass, furniture making, as well as spinning wool. For thirty-eight years, Hostetler taught at Ohio University, where he was later named Professor Emeritus. He split his time between Athens, Ohio, and Nantucket, where his wife now runs their gallery. Hostetler’s artwork is found in private and public collections, including the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston; Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton, New Jersey; and the Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio. Hostetler’s large sculpture “The Duo” can be seen in New York City near Columbus Circle.