I have been researching and lecturing on the life and work of Corrado Parducci since 2009. Parducci is mostly referred to as an architectural sculptor, however, I think a proper title would simply be designer. These days, he would probably best be known as an Industrial Designer, with having designed countless commissions of architectural sculpture, interior plaster work and bronze work. Additionally, he designed hub caps for Budd Wheel, and bumper designs for Hudson Motor Car Company. In his personal time, he sculpted busts of Greek and Roman figures from antiquity, painted intricate patterns on the walls of his home and even wove tapestries.
Parducci was revered by many architects who wanted him to work on their most exclusive projects – both in Detroit, Michigan, and nationally. Because of Parducci’s training at New York’s Beaux-Arts Institute of Design (BAID) and the Arts Students League, he was able to quickly see the architect’s vision for a space. Many times, the architect would provide a set of architectural drawings to Parducci where blank spaces had been left for him to fill in his designs. By working with Parducci, this would free up the architect’s draughtsmen for other things. Prior to this, the draughtsmen would furnish full scaled drawings of sculpture, ornamentation, or even doorknobs and window casings. It’s important to remember that during the early 20th century, everything was custom made for each architectural project. There was no Sweet’s Catalogue, whereas even Parducci said, “today we design by number.”
Local film maker Jack Johnson has created this short documentary as an introduction to my lectures.
More on Parducci…