Kosso Eloul

Kosso Eloul
 Eternal Flame 1974
Aluminum sculpture
13 x 18 x 14 inches

Born in Mourom, Russia, Kosso Eloul was raised in Israel, and educated in Tel Aviv and in the U.S.A. which included study at the Art Institute of Chicago (1939-43). A sculptor, originally traditional, who has become known for minimalist rectangular box-shaped pieces made from stainless steel which bring to mind the Cubi series of American sculptor David Smith (1906-1965).

Kosso Eloul came to Canada in the summer of 1964 at the invitation of the International Sculpture Symposium in Montreal, then went on to Toronto where he settled. Describing his work in the 1971 summer issue of Artscanada Theodore Heinrich noted, “His well-established style normally expresses itself in two basic patterns which are capable of a wide range of thematic variations. In the first of these a rectangular solid is sliced and one of the resulting components shifted. In the other a pair of elements of simi­lar shape but unequal size is permanently linked in a relationship in which each improbably but satisfyingly supports its mate. In either case Kosso fixes a vital point of balance that sustains itself at the supreme pitch of mutual tension. The shapes are geometrically simple, the material (stainless steel) is austere and the craftsmanship is impersonally perfect, but the results are complex and strangely warm . . . . The works suggest urban forms, industrial technologies and the tensions of an urban society in an industrial age. They studiously avoid figurative analogies and so do their titles which (like Lissitsky’s Proun) are mostly invented as an alternative to mere numbers or dates: Kobar, Kobrus, Gomil for example. This is a word-game played with his wife Rita Letendre. But in representing intellectural abstractions the works retain a distinctive humanism in the sure sense of scale and proportion that carry over from Kosso’s early years as a figurative sculptor . . . . “

Private collection, Toronto

A partial list of his solo shows include

  • David Stuart Gal., L.A., Calf. (1968)
  • Jerrold Morris Gal., Tor. (1968)
  • Benson Gal., Bridgehampton, L.I., N.Y. (1972)
  • Bau-XI Gal., Van. (1972)
  • Galerie de Montreal, Mtl. (1973)
  • Marlborough-Godard, Tor. (1974)
  • Arras Gal., NYC (1974) (1976)
  • Marlborough-Godard, Mtl. (1975)
  • AGO Project, Tor. “Artists and their work” (1976)
  • West End Gal., Edn. (1977)
  • Koffler Centre of the Arts, Tor. (1979)
  • Wallack Galleries, Ott. (c. 1980)

A par­tial list of his commissions include

  • Design for Israel’s yearly award for Drama and Film Arts (1957)
  • Sculpture Ner Tamid, for The Jewish Memorial Mountain, Yad Vashem (1960)
  • Flight, El-Al Airlines Bldg., Lydda Airport, Israel (1961)
  • Optimax (stone & concrete), 1st Can. Sculpture Symposium, Mount Royal Park, Mtl. (1964)
  • Harfact (stainless steel & concrete), California State College, Long Beach – California Sculpture Symposium (1965)
  • Steelforce, Federal Steel Corp., Long Beach, Calif. (1966)
  • Silentthunder, J. Patrick Lannan Fdn., Palm Beach, Fla. (1967)
  • Morningnite (gunite concrete fdn.), Beverly Woods, La.; Toron 68, York U., N. York; Meet, JDS Investm., Tor. (1970)
  • Alat, Paliton Cres. & Balliol St., Tor. (1972)
  • Double You, Greenwin Devel., Tor. (1973)
  • Constella, JDS Investm., Tor. (1975)
  • Salut, Ont. Her. Fdn., Confed. Park, Tor. (1975)
  • Intercity Gate, Tor. Gen. Hosp., Tor. (1978)
  • Hommage, 20 Holly St., Tor. (1978)
  • Shalom II, Jewish Comm. Centre, Bathurst St., Tor.; Zen West, St. Michael’s College, Tor. (1980)
  • Equinox, 393 Univ. Ave., Tor.; Solstice, Guild Inn, Scarborough (1981)
  • Time Capsule, Ont. Bicent. Comm., Ont. Place, Tor. (1984)
  • Meeting Place, Crown Life Ins. Co., Tor. (1984)
  • Onward (Granite), D. King, Smith Monument Co., Necropolis, Winchester St., Tor. (1992)

His awards and grants include

  • CC, Short Term Grant (1971, 72)
  • CC Senior Arts Grant (1975)


  • RCA
  • CAR
  • Intl. Assoc. of Plastic Arts, UNESCO, Paris

Biography courtesy of: National Gallery of Canada

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