Charles Ray is widely regarded as one of the most significant artists of his generation. He is best known for his sculptures of altered and refashioned familiar objects. In 2007, Carlson and Company sought the expertise of Martinez & Turek, Inc. to perform the intricate machining of "Father Figure", an eighteen-and-a-half ton sculpture made from solid machined stainless steel. Ray took as his starting point an old, green plastic children's toy of a man driving a tractor, with an unusual stylization, akin to ancient sculpture: the figure's legs face forward in the seat, while his torso and head turn 90 degrees outward. After many alterations to the initial model, the artist enlarged the form to stand eight feet tall and ten feet long, painting tractor and man alike in silver, black and vivid green.
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