WGNTV Video Feature

85-year-old Chicago sculptor has no plans to slow down

CHICAGO — A giant new sculpture went up this week along Clark and Aldine. It stands tall, is bright red and bold. Most would never guess it was the work of an 85-year-old woman.

Ruth Aizuss Migdal has been creating art since the age of 11.

Initially she created abstract paintings but several decades ago, Ruth began playing around with clay. She liked the feeling of working the piece with her hands. Her towering sculptures begin as wax molds, each pieced together section by section.

The collection of wax covered shoes is a testament to the hours spent at her molding table. Almost all of her pieces center around the female form. Migdal says that’s intentional and is a nod to empowering women through art.

“I love making sculptures,” she said. “It is lovely to see your pieces go up outside because you never really know how it’s going to look until it’s out there standing in the light. I love the whole process.” When they are finished, they are painted bright red, gold leafed or cast in bronze.

At 85, this sculptor hasn’t lost a bit of spark and passionately throws herself into the pieces you’ll find all over the country.

She says she has no plans to stop making the sculptures that have given her so much life.