International Sculpture Center
Facebook Twitter Instagram

Sculpture cover


Nov 2011
Vol.30 No 9

A publication of the
International Sculpture Center

This selection of shows has been curated by Sculpture magazine editorial staff and includes just a few of the great shows around the world.

Brooklyn Museum - Brooklyn: Kristof Wickman
Through November 27, 2011
An object maker and skilled builder of non-literal realities from all-too literal parts, Wickman launches a new Brooklyn Museum exhibition series spotlighting under-the-radar Brooklyn artists. Thousands of artists are creating work in the borough every day, and now five of these up-and-comers (selected by an advisory panel of established locals including Michael Joo and Paul Ramirez Jonas) will be able to showcase their work at the museum. Participating artists may work with the collection and install their shows in spaces of their choosing—however unconventional. For his first museum exhibition, Wickman presents a new group of his unusual hybrids, cast conflations of everyday objects and human body parts that coalesce into sometimes humorous and sometimes uncanny entities.
Tel: 718.638.5000
Web site

Kristof Wickman, Don't Let it Get You Down.
City Hall Park- New York: Sol LeWitt
Through December 2, 2011
For LeWitt, conceptualism and geometry were more than ends in themselves. Art may be first and foremost an embodiment of an idea, and that idea, encoded in explicit directions, may be reproduced by anyone, but the art itself, and the idea behind it, must express beauty. In 1984, he described his artistic objectives: “I would like my work to be seen by many people…I would also like to create universal beauty. I would like to produce something I would not be ashamed to show Giotto.” This show, the first-ever outdoor survey of his sculptures—or “structures” as he called his three-dimensional works, brings together large-scale pieces from the 1960s to the 2000s. Sculptures in aluminum, fiberglass, wood, and steel demonstrate the breadth and complexity achieved over the course of a career devoted to “re-creat[ing] art, to start[ing] from square one.”
Tel: 212.980.4575
Web site

Sol LeWitt, Three-Part Variations on Three Different Kinds of Cubes.
DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum - Lincoln, Massachusetts: Andy Goldsworthy
Through December 31, 2011
Earlier this year, DeCordova approved an ambitious new outdoor commission that emphasizes its renewed focus on sculpture. Goldsworthy’s Snow House expresses the full range of his interests—drawing together the experiential, the seasonal, the historical, and the cosmological—while adding a purposeful commitment to community. Set into a slope along the side of Flint’s Pond (where farmers once cut ice), the granite structure (based on the design of early ice houses), will house a single nine-foot-diameter ball of snow. Each winter, after the first significant snowfall, local residents will build the snowball and then entomb it within the shelter; come summer, the chamber will be opened once again to reveal the last relic of winter as it melts away. Marking the seasonal cycle in perpetuity, the work will also act as a monitoring system for changing weather patterns, charting precipitation and temperature variations through experience. This exhibition of Goldsworthy’s snow-related works, including photographs, video, and drawings, introduces his landmark proposal and the research behind it.
Tel: 781.259.8355
Web site

Andy Goldsworthy, Hawthorn Tree Snow-ball
Fondazione Emilio e Annabianca Vedova - Venice: Anselm Kiefer
Through November 30, 2011
Dense and evocative in terms of materials (paint, organic matter, clay, ash, lead, and found objects) as well as sources (alchemical treatises, mythology, Jewish mysticism, and modern history), Kiefer’s work offers an almost endless palimpsest of discoveries and possible interpretations. His new site-specific installation continues to dramatize the process of purification—bringing the violence of the world into art and thereby purging it. Salt of the Earth balances dissolution and sublimation in a single point of equilib?rium, its green-patinated lead signaling the union of opposites and underscoring the hope that resides in art as a continuous active force.
Tel: + 39 (0) 41 5226626
Web site

Anselm Kiefer, Salt of the Earth
Los Angeles County Museum of Art - Los Angeles: Asco
Through December 4, 2011
Geographically and culturally segregated from the nascent L.A. art scene of the 1970s and aesthetically at odds with the emerging Chicano art movement, the conceptual art group Asco (1972–87) came together to explore and exploit an unlimited range of media. Driven by the sentiment behind their name— the Spanish word for nausea or disgust—group members used performance, public art, and multimedia strategies to weigh in on the turbulent socio-political issues affecting their neighborhoods and the larger world. Creating art by any means necessary— often using their bodies and guerilla tactics—Asco merged art and activism and, in doing so, pushed the boundaries of what Chicano, or any other, art might encompass. “Asco: Elite of the Obscure” features nearly 150 works by core artists Gronk, Willie F. Herrón III, Harry Gamboa, Jr., and Patssi Valdez and their extended network of collaborators, including video, sculpture, painting, performance ephemera and documentation, collage, correspondence art, photography (including the No Movies, or invented film stills), and a series of new, specially commissioned works.
Tel: 323.857.6000
Web site

Asco, Instant Mural.
Magasin 3 Stockholm Konsthall - Stockholm: Andrea Zittel
Through December 11, 2011
One of America’s most influential artists, Zittel uses architecture and geography to explore the psychological, biological, and economic aspects of domestic and urban existence. Interested in what we humans need for survival, she researches, designs, and creates domestic settings based on her own life, which serve as test cases for experimental and utopian living systems. Over the last 20 years, she has dressed in the same home-sewn uniform for months, tested spatial restrictions by occupying an artificial island, and lived without measured time. This exhibition focuses on work developed at A—Z West, Zittel’s studio in Joshua Tree, California, where she has created minimal households in which everyday activities such as sleeping, eating, cooking, and socializing become artistic actions. Instead of using the desert as a metaphor for escapism, autonomy, and freedom, Zittel examines how it makes the cultural, political, and economic organization of populated spaces even more evident.
Tel: + 46 8 545 680 40
Web site

Andrea Zittel, A - Z Wagon Station Customized by Giovanni Jance.
Morton Arboretum - Lisle, Illinois: “Nature Unframed”
Through November 27, 2011
At the beginning of this year, the Morton Arboretum invited 11 international artists to visualize its mission of saving and planting trees. The wide range of responses on view in “Nature Unframed,” regardless of style or medium, share an approach that defines trees as living presences and participants in human life. Highlights include Juan Angel Chavez’s survivalist treehouse inspired by squirrel nests, cocoons, makeshift tent cities, and the plastic bags that form “unnatural yet natural” shelters high up in branches; Philippa Lawrence’s revealing concealment of a dead cork tree, its entire form, from trunk to twig, bound and bandaged in bright yellow cotton; and Letha Wilson’s synthesis of “architecture and nature, gallery space and American wilderness” in which tree branches piercing a 16-foot-tall “canvas” create a living relief sculpture. As participating artist Larry King says, “Saving our endangered trees should be the highest priority for everyone.” This show just might inspire visitors to take action and start planting.
Tel: 630.968.0074
Web site

Philippa Lawrence, Bound, from "Nature Unframed."
Museum of Contemporary Art - Chicago: Eiko and Koma
Through November 13, 2011
Art forms merge and the gallery becomes a stage when renowned Japanese American movement artists Eiko and Koma create their “living installations.” Dance, theater, sculpture, and ritual fuse in these indefinable performance works informed by butoh (Japan’s radical postwar dance-theater form), Zen Buddhism, and the political and cultural movements of the 1960s. Exploring the interrelations of nature and the human body and using the tools of duration and process as guideposts, Eiko and Koma design and personally populate each installation space. In Naked, their first prolonged, gallery-based performance since Breath (1998) at the Whitney, the duo continues to explore the power of slow movement, inhabiting an immersive and charged organic environment in which visitors are invited to stay for a few minutes or the entire day. The last performances are scheduled for November 8–13.
Tel: 312.280.2660
Web site

Eiko and Koma, Offering.
National Museum of African Art - Washington, DC: Sandile Zulu and Henrique Oliveira
Through December 4, 2011
For the second installment of NMAA’s Artists in Dialogue series, Sandile Zulu of South Africa and Henrique Oliveira of Brazil have united their distinctive styles and techniques in a visual call and response, exploring mutual interests in the manipulation of surface, the workings of the inner body, and the inspirational power of elements like fire and water. Oliveira, who is known for his undulating, invasive, and almost uncontained explosions of painted wood, has shared his trademark materials with Zulu; Zulu, in turn, inspired Oliveira to work with fire for the first time, passing along his ability to create crisply designed, almost Minimalist expressions out of leaping, flickering flames. Seven ambitious and provocative new works reveal the depths of their creative exchange, harnessing, as Zulu says, “the power of life within.”
Tel: 202.633.4600
Web site

Sandile Zulu, Spinal Diagnosis - a regenerate case no. 2.
Rice University Art Gallery - Houston: Ana Serrano
Through December 11, 2011
Serrano notices parts of the urban landscape that most of us dismiss as urban planning (or lack thereof) gone haywire. Her small sculptures of buildings cull together what might catch her eye on a morning walk: hand-painted signage on a local business, the blue and turquoise colors of a house with the cord of a satellite dish snaking down the side, or an auto parts shop adjoining a pink and yellow piñata store. Salon of Beauty (the name comes from a mom-and-pop beauty salon) continues her investigation into the homespun and ephemeral nature of “spontaneous architecture,” calling attention to “untraditional beauty” found in the most unlikely of places. In her first site-specific installation, Serrano hopes to capture the experience of moving through a city in its entirety, complete with unexpected moments and juxtapositions that playfully mix observations of a city constantly being made and unmade by its residents.
Tel: 713.348.6069
Web site

Ana Serrano, Cartonlandia.
San Diego State University Art Gallery - San Diego: Deborah Aschheim
Through December 3, 2011
Aschheim’s obsessive and immersive installations focus on sculptural and interactive approaches to neuroscience, memory, and cognitive processes, drawing parallels between invisible and visible patterns. Entering these multi-sensory webs of light, audio-video elements, and linear components, viewers are transported into a physical and metaphorical manifestation of the brain’s networking operations. Recently Aschheim has narrowed her investigation to questions of mem?ory (real, imagined, and involuntary), adding an autobiographical element that she calls the “scariest thing.” This show includes three major bodies of work created in collaboration with musician Lisa Mezzacappa. Part experimental psychology and part personal narrative, On Memory, Earworms, and Nostalgia for the Future visualize the neural in stunning fashion while respecting the beauties and mysteries of the brain.
Tel: 619.594.5171
Web site

Debora Aschheim, June 2.
SKOR / Foundation for Art and Public Domain / CBK Emmen (Centre for Visual Arts) - Emmen, the Netherlands: Robert Smithson / “The Ultraperiferic”
Through November 27, 2011
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of Smithson’s Broken Circle/Spiral Hill (1971)—his only Land Art project outside the U.S.—several Dutch institutions have joined forces to present a number of ambitious programs that will run through 2013. Two exhibitions at CBK Emmen kick things off. “Robert Smithson in Emmen” offers an unprecedented examination of what many consider to be the artist’s most complex work, a geometrical figure built into a sand quarry whose positive and negative figures conjoin land and water in a play on erosion. In addition to never before seen sketches and plans, as well as documentation of the various restoration efforts undertaken over the years, the show features a completed version of the Broken Circle/Spiral Hill film left unfinished at Smithson’s death. Nancy Holt worked with a team from SKOR to edit her original footage and incorporate new video, following Smithson’s film notes and drawings. The second exhibition, “The Ultraperiferic,” gathers commissioned proposals by a number of artists—including Lara Almarcegui, Jorge Satorre, and Cyprien Gaillard—for new works that consider the landscape as continual process. Selected projects will be realized at various peripheral sites. Of course, the object of all this attention has not been forgotten: Broken Circle/Spiral Hill, which is located on private land, has extended opening hours through this month, and visitors to the CBK exhibitions can take a special bus to the site on the weekends.
Tel: +31 (0) 591-685820
Web site,

Robert Smithson, Broken Circle/Spiral Hill.
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts - Richmond: Xu Bing
Through November 27, 2011
In his Tobacco Project trilogy, Xu Bing uses tobacco—as both material and subject—to explore a wide range of issues, from global trade and exploitation to the ironies of advertising. Drawing on the history of North Carolina’s Duke family, China’s dependence on American tobacco products beginning in the late 19th century, and Virginia’s tobacco legacy, this ongoing suite of works combines traditional techniques with radical experimentation. During his recent two-week residency in Richmond, he created several new pieces, including a 300-pound block of compressed tobacco embossed with the text “light as smoke,” a book of 50 historic tobacco slogans redesigned and printed on cigarette paper to form a bound volume of poetry, and a large installation that forms the climax of the exhibition—a “tiger-skin” rug whose orange and white pattern emerges from a field of over half a million, alternately upended cigarettes.
Tel: 804.340.1400
Web site

Xu Bing, Red Book.
Walker Art Center - Minneapolis: Nathalie Djurberg
Through December 18, 2011
Since 2002, Djurberg has honed a distinctive and compulsive style of video animation, using the pliability of clay to investigate the dark recesses of the mind. Set to music by her partner and collaborator Hans Berg, her hand-crafted tales cast an unblinking eye on the vicissitudes of revenge, lust, submission, and gluttony. In Djurberg’s hands, the innocent technique of claymation becomes a medium for wry allegories of human behavior and social taboo that blur the sculptural and the cinematic into nightmarish versions of reality. This exhibition introduces a new body of work devoted to a natural history of birds—their evolution and physiology, rituals of mating and territorial display, and the social phenomenon of flocking. Exquisite, sometimes monstrous hybrids, these new species migrate from the pedestal to the screen, where their interactions cast an unsettling light on human society.
Tel: 612.375.7600
Web site

Nathalie Djurberg, with music by Hans Berg, I wasn't made to play the son.

Complete text in print version available at fine newsstands and through subscription. Please visit our Membership page for more information.

Click here for Sculpture magazine ARCHIVES
To advertise in Sculpture magazine, call 718.812.8826 or e-mail

Click here to sign up for a digital subscription ($60) to Sculpture


Website Design & Development by Cybermill Interactive