Thaddeus Mosley

Thaddeus Mosley (b. 1926, New Castle, Pennsylvania) creates monumental sculptures crafted from the felled trees of Pittsburgh’s urban canopy. Using only a chisel and gauge to maintain the integrity of the original log, Mosley reworks salvaged timber—primarily from indigenous Pennsylvanian hardwoods such as sycamore, cherry, and walnut—into biomorphic forms. Through a process of direct carving, the artist’s marks respond to and rearticulate the natural gradations of the material’s surface. With influences ranging from Isamu Noguchi to Constantin Brâncuși—and the Bamum, Dogon, Baoulé, Senufo, Dan, and Mossi works of his personal collection—Mosley’s “sculptural improvisations,” as he calls them, also take cues from the modernist traditions of jazz. “The only way you can really achieve something is if you’re not working so much from a pattern. That’s also the essence of good jazz,” he says of his method. Mosley lives in Pittsburgh.

Mosley will be celebrated at the SculptureCenter’s Annual Gala this spring. He was the recipient of the 2022 Isamu Noguchi Award. Thaddeus Mosley: Forest, a retrospective exhibition that opened at the Baltimore Museum of Art in 2021, traveled to Art + Practice, Los Angeles (2022) and Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas (2023). His work has been exhibited and acquired by major museums and foundations since 1959, including the Bergen Kunsthall, Norway (2022); Art + Practice, Los Angeles, California (2022); Baltimore Museum of Art (2021); Harvard Business School, Boston (2020); Sculpture Milwaukee (2020); Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh (2018); and Mattress Factory Museum, Pittsburgh (2009). His sculptures are held in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago; Baltimore Museum of Art; Brooklyn Museum, New York; Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; High Museum of Art, Atlanta; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

Photo by Nate Guidry

Photo by Nate Guidry

Born 1926, New Castle, Pennsylvania
Lives and works in Pittsburgh



BA, English and Journalism, University of Pittsburgh

Selected Solo and Two-Person Exhibitions


Karma, Los Angeles, Recent Sculptures 

Karma, New York, Recent Sculpture


70 Main Street, Maine, Thaddeus Mosley and Frank Walter: Sanctuary


Baltimore Museum of Art, Maryland, Forest, October 17, 2021–March 27, 2022; Art + Practice, Los Angeles, September 17, 2022–January 21, 2023; Nasher Sculpture Center, Dallas, May 13–August 20, 2023 (traveling exhibition)


Karma, New York


CUE Art Foundation, New York


Paul Mesaros Gallery, Morgantown, West Virginia


August Wilson Center, Pittsburgh, Sculptures by Thaddeus G. Mosley


The Mattress Factory Museum, Pittsburgh, Thaddeus Mosley: Sculpture (Studio/Home)


CUE Art Foundation, New York


Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, Pittsburgh, Thaddeus Mosley


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Recent Sculpture by Thaddeus Mosley


Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Pittsburgh


Three Rivers Arts Festival, Pittsburgh


Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, Pittsburgh, Artist of the Year


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh

Selected Group Exhibitions


Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, Inheritance


Berkshire Botanical Garden, Stockbridge, Massachusetts, Symbiosis, curated by Beth Rudin DeWoody

The FLAG Art Foundation, New York, Courage Before Expectation, curated by Keith Rivers

Bergen Kunsthall, Bergen, Norway, File Under Freedom


Maximillian William, London, Embodying Anew
Grimm Gallery, Amsterdam, Romancing the Surface, curated by Loie Hollowell


Friedman Benda, New York, Comfort, curated by Omar Sosa


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Carnegie International
Featherstone Center for the Arts, Massachusetts, The Beautiful Difference


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, 20/20: The Studio Museum in Harlem and Carnegie Museum of Art


Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, Pittsburgh, Society of Sculptors 80th Anniversary Annual Exhibition


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Uncrated: The Hidden Lives of Artworks
University Art Gallery at the University of Pittsburgh, Exposure: Black Voices in the Arts


African American Cultural Center of Greater Pittsburgh, Generations: Six African American Artists


National Academy of Design, New York, 183rd Annual: Am Innovational Exhibition of Contemporary American Art

Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia, In Search of Missing Masters: The Lewis Tanner Moore Collection of African American Art


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Popular Salon of the People: Associated Artists of Pittsburgh Annuals, 1910-2006


Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, 66th Annual Exhibition of the Associated Artists of Pittsburgh


Three Rivers Arts Festival, Pittsburgh

Selected Public Projects and Installations


Harvard Business School, Boston

Sculpture Milwaukee, there is this We, curated by Theaster Gates and Michelle Grabner

Urban Redevelopment Authority, East Bond Plaza, Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, EQT Plaza, Pittsburgh


Frieze Sculpture, Rockefeller Center, New York, curated by Brett Littman


Cities of Asylum, Pittsburgh, Winged House

Public Collections

Art Institute of Chicago
The August Wilson African American Center, Pittsburgh
Baltimore Museum of Art, Maryland
Brooklyn Museum, New York City
Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Colby College Museum, Waterville, Maine
David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
High Museum of Art, Atlanta
Martin Luther King Jr. Library, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Mattress Factory Museum, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City

Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Greensburg, Pennsylvania
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York City


Isamu Noguchi Award, The Noguchi Museum

United States Artists Fellowship

American Academy of Arts and Letters Awards in Art

Governor’s Award for Artist of the Year, Pennsylvania Visual Arts

Cultural Award, Pittsburgh Center of the Arts

Service in the Arts Award, Pittsburgh Center of the Arts

History Makers Award, Senator John Heinz History Center



Thaddeus Mosley
Texts by Ingrid Schaffner, Sam Gilliam, Brett Littman, Jessica Bell Brown, Ed Roberson, Connie H. Choi, and an interview by Hans Ulrich Obrist
Karma, New York
312 pages, hardcover
7 1/2 × 9 1/4 inches


Thaddeus Mosley: African-American Sculptor
Narrative by David Lewis
University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh
86 pages, soft cover
8 × 10 inches