Terracotta art and architecture reached unprecedented heights in 16th century Bengal. The devotional movement then sweeping over the region, opened floodgates of creativity. Sacred and civilian buildings, made of baked clay bricks and decorated with extravagant motifs, were set up to showcase the resurgent innovative spirits of the artists and craftsmen. Monumental structures were designed by the architects using innovative techniques that managed to defy the fragility of terracotta structures. Even five hundred years on, the remains of these historical edifices overwhelm us with their beauty and intricacy. What was the essence of terracotta art? And, how did the artists manage to create such timeless pieces of work?
Brad Spencer is a forerunner among the artists who explored the potential of creating brick sculptures in recent times. In fact, he dedicated three decades of his life to perfecting his skills at this not–so–usual–art form. Due to the nature of the work, brick sculptures are particularly suited for public art projects. Many prominent landmarks of Reidsville, North Carolina, where the artist lives, and beyond are now adorned with Brad’s sculptural essays. The visual lyricism of his art is self-evident.