Sculptor Joel Shapiro (American, b.1941) creates compelling wooden sculptures of human forms, embracing an aesthetic that lies between figuration and abstraction. Born in New York, Shapiro originally intended to be a physician and studied science as an undergraduate at New York University. After serving in the Peace Corps in India for two years, he decided to pursue a career as an artist; upon his return, he took further classes at New York University while working on his art. Shapiro references traces of human activity in his first sculptures through including small-scale works of furniture and homes. His more recent work depicts abstracted, large-scale geometric shapes suggestive of human forms in bronze, wood, and other materials. Shapiro’s work has often been associated with Post-Minimalist art. He has received several awards for his work, including the Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture, a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and membership in the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He receives frequent commissions to create public sculptures, including works at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, among many others. Shapiro currently lives and works in New York.