The making of sculpture may be taken as a desire for wholeness: the recognition of one’s identity as part of the earth and its materials. In the confrontation of one’s inner image with physical materials, a dialogue begins and the result is a sculptural statement. Through this dialogue an attempt is made to clarify subject and object matter. … The material I have chosen to have a working dialogue with is stone. —Bradford Graves, “The Making of Sculpture” (Aug. 6, 2006)
Graves was born in Dallas, Texas in 1939. He moved to New York City in 1958 where he studied at the School of the Visual Arts, the American School, and the New School. It was at the New School that Graves encountered sculptor Seymour Lipton—his greatest influence. During his life Graves traveled throughout the world—Greece, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Haiti, Scotland, Africa, Japan and the American Southwest—continuously nourishing his appetite for archaeology and new cultural experiences. He also served on the faculty at Parsons School of Design in New York City and Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, NJ. Graves’ passed away on April 16, 1998.