International Sculpture Center
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December 2003 Vol.22 No. 10
A publication of the International Sculpture Center


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Gabriel Orozco, La Oficina, from “Work Ethic”

Baltimore Museum of Art
Work Ethic
Through January 4, 2004

Since the 1960s, artists have been hard at work—pushing the limits of what is considered art. “Work Ethic” brings together nearly 80 objects by an international group of artists to explore the nature of “work” in artwork. From video recordings of Bruce Nauman’s obsessive, self-imposed studio tasks to a machine by Roxy Paine that produces a painting in the absence of the artist, the exhibition considers how artists have grappled with what is considered legitimate artistic labor. Iconic works by Frank Stella and Robert Rauschenberg are featured along with contemporary works by David Hammons, Vito Acconci, Francis Alÿs, Fischli & Weiss, Gabriel Orozco, Richard Serra, and Mierle Laderman Ukeles (among many others) in an effort to challenge the rules of the workplace and the art world.
Tel: 410.396.7100
Web site

Lucy Orta, Collective Survival Sac

Bellevue Art Museum
Bellevue, Washington
Lucy Orta: Nexus Architecture + Connector IV
Through January 18, 2004

Bridging sculpture, performance, fashion, and architecture, Orta’s works are functional and based on the idea of refuge. Her designs give assistance in natural, social, and political disasters and provide shelter/protection for people living in precarious or marginal situations. This exhibition features multi-functional clothing, survival kits, and environments or modular dwellings developed in collaboration withcommunity groups from around the world that function practically and metaphorically to address the plight of those at risk. Orta calls her work “Instigator Sculpture,” a “catalyst between utopia and reality.”
Tel: 425.519.0770
Web site


Corcoran Gallery of Art
Washington, DC
Jim Sanborn: Atomic Time: Pure Science and Seduction
Through January 26, 2004

Sanborn has been working on Critical Assembly, his comprehensive installation about the Manhattan Project and the origins of U.S. nuclear weapons, since 1998. The work is both a re-creation and an interpretation of the experiments carried out at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory in New Mexico from 1942 to 1955. Sanborn began by gathering original laboratory furniture, equipment, and hardware from machinists, physicists, and a variety of other workers. To complete the installation, he fabricated additional parts. The finished work depicts the Los Alamos lab as it might have appeared. Critical Assembly suggests a secret site of major discovery—remote, menacing, and overwhelming in its implications.
Tel: 202.639.1700
Web site

Debra Weisberg, (Sub) Surface

DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park
Lincoln, Massachusetts
Debra Weisberg: (Sub) Surface
Through January 2004

For (Sub) Surface, the latest in an ongoing series of site-specific installations in DeCordova’s Grand Staircase, Weisberg violates the purity of the 40-foot-tall elevator shaft wall. By introducing plaster and glass sculptural elements into the surface, she creates an illusion of potential catastrophe, as the wall seems to rupture and break apart. The museum, assumed to be an eternal storehouse of cultural treasures, metaphorically undergoes the fate of all architectural constructions: decay, dissolution, and eventual collapse.
Tel: 781.259.8355
Web site



Jorge Pardo, Prototype

New York
Jorge Pardo: Prototype
Through January 11, 2004

Dia recently commissioned Pardo’s large-scale plywood structure, which is designed to adapt to a variety of uses. Created in the artist’s Los Angeles studio, the kit was assembled on site in Dia’s first-floor gallery, which Pardo redesigned, along with the bookstore and lobby, back in 2000. Prototype consists of computer-generated forms based on irregular geometries laser-cut from plywood. As a full-scale model for a prefabricated structure, it can be modified and reassembled depending on function—outdoor pavilion, residence, or performance venue.
Tel: 212.989.5566
Web site

Agnes Denes, composite images of Wheat Field—A Confrontation

Haggerty Museum of Art
Marquette University
Agnes Denes: Projects for Public Places
Through January 4, 2004

Denes’s environmental works establish unique links between the built environment and the natural world. This retrospective features over 60 projects, represented by 110 drawings, models, and photographs dating from 1968 to the present. Foremost among the included works are Wheatfield—A Confrontation (1982), a two-acre wheat field planted in Lower Manhattan’s Battery Park, and Tree Mountain—A Living Time Capsule (1992–96), a huge manmade mountain of 11,000 trees planted by 11,000 people in the gravel fields of Ylöjärvi, Finland. Denes is currently designing a 25-year masterplan for the Nieuwe Hollandse Waterlinie in the Netherlands. Her goal is to unite a 100-kilometer-long string of forts dating from the 16th to the 19th centuries, incorporating flood and water management, urban planning, historical preservation, landscaping, and tourism.
Tel: 414.288.1669
Web site

Hildur Bjarnadottir, Untitled (detail), from "Pins and Needles"

John Michael Kohler Arts Center
Sheboygan, Wisconsin
Pins and Needles
Through January 4, 2004

The artists featured in “Pins and Needles” use or reference handicraft techniques—crochet, knitting, embroidery, lace-making, sewing, twining, beading, braiding, needlepoint, latch hook, and weaving—to make works that physically and conceptually challenge the boundaries of typical “handiwork” and that comment on the place of such traditions in art and culture. For them, craft and folk techniques serve as a specific link to personal history, as a metaphor for time and memory, as a subversive act, and as a way to explore contemporary society. Participating artists include Ruth Asawa, Tracy Krumm, Norma Minkowitz, Jeanne Silverthorne, Ann Hamilton, Kyoung Ae Cho, and Sonya Clark.
Tel: 920.458.6144
Web site

Kathleen Holmes, Alphabetty

Kniznick Gallery, Women’s Studies Research Center, Brandeis University
Waltham, Massachusetts
Kathleen Holmes: Larger Than Life
Through December 31, 2003

Holmes’s signature sculptural form, an archetypal dress, pays homage to generations of anonymous women who engaged in crochet, sewing, and embroidery. She incorporates a wide range of found materials into her works, including metal, plaster, glass, ceramic, and crocheted textiles. Frequently nostalgic, sometimes humorous, her sculptures underscore the struggles of women’s lives. For Holmes, the repetitive regularity of crochet becomes emblematic of the patterns people live by—emotional, social, behavioral, and spiritual. This show features her large-scale works.
Tel: 781.736.8102
Web site


Michael Joo, Chia

MIT List Visual Arts Center
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Michael Joo
Through January 4, 2004

Joo’s interest in science informs his sculptures, videos, and installations, which extend beyond an examination of the effects of race and gender on identity to explore how science, religion, and the media shape consciousness. Chosen to represent South Korea in the 2001 Venice Biennale, the second-generation Korean American first gained international attention in 1994 when Damien Hirst included him in “Some Went Mad, Some Ran Away” at London’s Serpentine Gallery. Joo uses new technologies and bizarre materials for deeply eccentric purposes. With urinal cakes, synthetic testicles, laser beams, artificial lambs wool, mercury, bleach, and hydrochloric acid, he re-creates the substances, machineries, and elastic identifies of the contemporary world.
Tel: 617.253.4680
Web site

Yoshitomo Nara, Light My Fire

Museum of Contemporary Art
Yoshitomo Nara: Nothing Ever Happens
Through January 4, 2004

Among the most celebrated of his generation of Japanese artists, Nara is recognized for his neo-pop sculptures and paintings of big-eyed, alternately sad, mischievous, and malevolent children. His work expresses the alienation and fierce independence of childhood, inviting viewers to reconnect with the defiant spirit that comes with youthful optimism. While Nara’s work is characterized by a flat, graphic style, his artistic influences range beyond the realm of anime to embrace Renaissance painting, literature, graffiti, and punk rock. His sculpture is as steeped in traditional craftsmanship as it is in popular culture and slick animation. This show features sculptures, drawings, and paintings completed over the last few years, many of which have never been exhibited.
Tel: 216.421.8671
Web site


Ernesto Neto, Three Religions, No God and the Children

Museum of Contemporary Art Pacific Design Center
West Hollywood
Ernesto Neto
Through January 12, 2004

Best known for creating sensuous environments and tactile organic forms, Neto has transformed MOCA's space at the Pacific Design Center with a new large-scale sculpture. A soft, three-tiered translucent tent—made from his trademark hosiery-inspired fabric—hangs from the ceiling and fills the room with the aromas of chamomile, lavender, and oregano. Visitors are encouraged to enter the installation through one of three openings and to explore its various internal chambers. Neto's unique combination of formal sophistication and appealing forms provides seductive stimuli for the senses and the mind.
Tel: 213.626.6222
Web site

Stacey Neff, Spatial Negotiation

Museum of Glass
Tacoma, Washington
Stacey Neff: Becoming
Through March 7, 2004

To create her sensuous, organic forms, Neff blows molten glass, then twists and turns it, performing irregular motions as it cools to obtain unpredictable results. The finished sculptures retain an appearance of fluidity and graceful motion. Her work subtly conveys a sense of being in flux. “Becoming” investigates the relationship between growth and time, body and mind, and motion and stillness. Neff’s show is one of three concurrent exhibitions at the museum (photographer Michael Kenna and sculptor Mayme Kratz are also featured) devoted to the natural world as inspiration and subject matter.
Tel: 866.4.MUSEUM
Web site

Medardo Rosso, Ecce Puer (Behold the Child)

Saint Louis Art Museum
Saint Louis
Medardo Rosso: Second Impressions
Through February 29, 2004

The 17 sculptures included in this exhibition offer an intimate exploration of Rosso’s working process and innovations. Five works from the sculptor’s mature style provide a thematic focus: each is represented by distinct castings in wax, plaster, and bronze, showcasing Rosso’s pioneering experiments with materials and casting techniques—among other accomplishments, he found a way to arrest lost-wax bronze casting in mid-course, so that the intermediate wax cast could be retained. His extensive experimentation exemplifies how sculpture was transformed during the late 19th century, with vigorous sketchy modeling replacing realistic detail and wax elevated to the status of bronze. Rosso wrung endless variations from his original clay models, casting and recasting in a career-long pursuit of sculptural production and reproduction.
Tel: 314.721.0072
Web site

James Turrell, Raemar

Sonoma County Museum
Santa Rosa, California
James Turrell: Light and Land
Through January 4, 2004

This two-part exhibition features prints, models, and aerial photographs of Roden Crater, Turrell’s monumental project in the Arizona desert, and Raemar (1969), a rarely seen early work. Last exhibited at the Stedelijk Museum in 1976, Raemar is a room-sized installation composed of 12 fluorescent lights behind a screen wall, which is erected in front of a bearing wall in the gallery. Viewers enter a small room in which the far wall appears to float in a halo of light. Like all of Turrell’s installation pieces, Raemar plays with visual perception, makes space indefinable, and questions how we perceive light and space. According to the artist, “When you reduce light and the pupil opens, feeling comes out of the eye like touch.”
Tel: 707.579.1500
Web site

Lynn Chadwick, Dragonfly as installed at the Tate Britain

Tate Britain
Lynn Chadwick
Through March 2004

This retrospective includes over 30 sculptures from Chadwick’s 50-year career, ranging from some of his earliest surviving mobiles to the monumental pieces of his last years. The British sculptor was launched onto the international stage at the Venice Biennale in 1952. When he beat Giacometti to win the International Prize for Sculpture in 1956, it was the sensation of the Biennale. During the ’50s, he developed a new way of working that combined a welded iron armature with an artificial stone compound of gypsum and iron filings. This material provided an evocative, textured surface that continued to grow richer over time. Bronze dominated his work until the 1990s, when he made a number of monumental sculptures in polished steel, two of which are displayed in the sculpture court. Chadwick’s archetypal abstractions derive from the human figure and animal forms. While the animals explore aggression and vulnerability, the later figures examine details of human movement, interaction, and sexuality.
Tel: +44 20 7887 8000
Web site

Rebecca Horn, Arm Extensions

Tate Liverpool
Liverpool, U.K.
Rebecca Horn
Through January 11, 2004

German sculptor and filmmaker Rebecca Horn has created site-specific installations for the last two decades. The Tate has extensive holdings of her work, and this exhibition presents a number of key pieces, including Ballet of the Woodpeckers. Originally created for a Viennese asylum, this large-scale installation features several mechanical hammers that appear to strike eight large mirrors, threatening to shatter viewers’ reflections. Also included are Horn’s “body extension” works, a series of sculptures designed to be attached to a performer (films of the performances are also being screened) and concerned with the body, isolation, and vulnerability.
Tel: +44 151 702 7400
Web site

Robert Lazzarini, payphone

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Robert Lazzarini
Through January 4, 2004

Combining extreme realism with extreme distortion, Lazzarini re-creates familiar objects (to scale) using their original materials, while deforming them in seemingly impossible ways. The results are uncanny and unsettling. This show includes his two most widely recognized sculptures: an installation of four skewed skulls and a warped pay phone. A selection of works on paper provides insight into his exploration of classical sculpture and studies of human anatomy. Lazzarini’s process embraces cutting-edge technology (CAD rendering and rapid prototyping) and traditional sculptural techniques (carving and casting). Appearing to expand and contract as viewers shift vantage points, the works seem to collapse on themselves, or, as Lazzarini says, they “slip toward their own demise.”
Tel: 804.340.1400
Web site

Capital with Hathor, from "Eternal Egypt"

The Walters Art Museum
Eternal Egypt: Masterworks of Ancient Art from the British Museum
Through January 18, 2004

While several recent exhibitions of Egyptian art have subordinated aesthetics to scholarly thematics, “Eternal Egypt” revels in beauty. The 144 objects, which range from the pre-Dynastic period to the Roman occupation, demonstrate the astounding variety of Egyptian art over a 3,000-year period. From colossal sculptures and architectural pieces to intricate jewelry and precisely rendered statuettes, the consummate skill of Egyptian sculptors is revealed in stone, wood, terra cotta, ivory, gold, glass, and bronze. Highlights include a striding figure from the Old Kingdom, whose posture torques to follow the wood grain, and a monumental head of Amenhotep III sensitively carved in calcite. In conjunction with this exhibition, the museum has mounted two specialized shows, including “Tools and Models: The Craft of the Sculptor in Ancient Egypt,” which focuses on stone-carving techniques and includes many examples of the so-called sculptor’s models or trial pieces.
Tel: 410.547.9000
Web site

Constance De Jong, Speaking of the River, at Bear Mountain, NY, from "Watershed"

Watershed: The Hudson Valley Art Project
Hudson River Valley
Through December 2005

“Watershed” is a pilot program of commissioned artworks and educational initiatives designed to raise awareness of the imaginative and physical landscapes of the Hudson River Valley. The project presents new works by Lothar Baumgarten, Matthew Buckingham, Constance De Jong, Peter Hutton, Matts Leiderstam, Christian Philipp Müller, Lynne Tilman, George Trakas, James Welling, and Pae White in 15 sites through the Hudson Valley. Featuring writers, filmmakers, and photographers, as well as artists who pursue conceptual and hybrid art practices, “Watershed” encompasses a wide variety of forms. Two of the sited projects—Trakas’s Beacon Point Project, commissioned by Minetta Brook in collaboration with Dia Center for the Arts, and De Jong’s Speaking of the River, commissioned by Minetta Brook with Scenic Hudson—will become permanent additions to the Beacon waterfront. Many of the other eight works, installed in Beacon, Bear Mountain, Garrison, New Paltz, Poughkeepsie, and Annandale-on-Hudson, extend beyond their physical sites through artists’ books and CDs.
Tel: 212.431.7165
Web site