Donald Baechler, Walking Figure
Walking Figure is a 10-foot tall, richly textured bronze sculpture by contemporary American artist Donald Baechler. Emerging from the neo-expressionism of the 1980s, Baechler’s work is part of permanent exhibitions in such prestigious institutions as New York’s Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Centre George Pompidou in Paris.
Depicting a gangly young woman in dynamic mid-stride, the work juxtaposes a sense of whimsy and humor with purpose and determination. Projecting from a diamond-shaped torso at near right-angles, her extended arms and legs suggest forward-driven momentum. Her pursed lower lip and tightly balled hands also attest to her resolve.
Where is she going? we can’t help but wonder. What mission is driving her on? Perhaps she is on her way to right a wrong, the unlikely, larger-than-life champion of the underrepresented (OR the downtrodden). Or perhaps she is simply running late for class or rushing to an appointment. No matter. Regardless of her purpose and destination, Baechler’s work is a playful reminder that destiny reveals itself in all shapes and sizes.