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Sculpture cover


April 2017
Vol. 36 No. 3

A publication of the
International Sculpture Center
Washington, DC: Roxana Alger Geffen- Flashpoint Gallery
by Laura Roulet
Rixana Akger Geffin, view of motherload Though the chaotic world of parenting is all consuming when one’s children are young, it remains a risky theme for art-making. Roxana Alger Geffen boldly titled her multi-part installation Motherload with full awareness of the feminist artists who came before her and who were dismissed or pilloried for daring to valorize this elemental experience. She expands on motherhood’s—in her words—“messy box of intimacy” with broader themes addressing the construction of familial memories and notions of domestic labor. As “amateur jacks-of-all-trades and masters of none,” parents, like homeowners a feeling that all artists share ...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Roxana Alger Geffen,Installation view of Motherload, 2016.
Washington, DC: Renwick Invitational 2016- Renwick Gallery
by Elena Goukassian
Norwood Viviano, Recasting Michigan The Renwick Gallery’s biennial invitationals highlight mid-career artists pushing the boundaries of craft. According to curator Nora Atkinson, the 2016 edition, “Visions and Revisions,” focused on the “degradation of society and the reinvention and rebirth of it.” Featuring the works of four American artists—Jennifer Trask, Steven Young Lee, Norwood Viviano, and Kristen Morgin—the exhibition went beyond mere ruin porn to examine the meticulous processes of each individual artist. Trask’s delicate and astoundingly paper-thin flowers carved out of bone were among the most impressive works in terms of technical skill. Often embedded with gold and gold leaf, Trask’s morbid take on art deco juxtaposes the natural with the manmade. Atkinson described them as “an ode to vanitas…bone flowers emerging and nature breaking forth.” ....see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Norwood Viviano, Recasting Michigan: Detroit Population Shift, 2010.
Boothbay, Maine: Gary Haven Smith- Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens
by B. Amore
Gary Haven Smith, Swept Away Boogie Woogie and Wiggle Room are hardly names one would expect to find for sculptures in stone, but Gary Haven Smith is hardly your ordinary stone sculptor. His approach is somewhere between a considered Zen aesthetic and playful invention. “Stone Waves,” his recent exhibition, showcased the impressive range of his freestanding work. Swept Away, perched on a pyramidal granite obelisk, looks like a twisted piece of paper. Its eccentric, complex curves resemble ram’s horns or the head of a shamanistic figure. The whorls on each side are shell-like, in the sense of spiraling into the center, but they also resemble wings. The piece looks as if it might lift off. Smith’s approach to stone is distinctive and unique. His preferred medium is glacial boulders, when he can find them. ...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Gary Haven Smith, Swept Away, 2014.
Boston: Caoimhghin Ó Fraithile- The Back Bay Fens
by Jonathan Goodman
Caoimhghin O Fraithile, South of Hy-BrasilCaoimhghin Ó Fraithile’s remarkable floating sculpture, placed in the Fens some 400 yards from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, celebrates the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising, which eventually led to independence for Ireland. The artist is known for his sculptural installations, particularly in Japan, where he regularly works with local people to construct environments in the town of Fukui, near the city of Niigata. But he has also done installations in the U.S., including an environment constructed on Maiden Lane in New York from 2010 to 2011. South of Hy-Brasil, which appears to be abstract, rises 18 feet into the air. It is made from thatching—an obvious reference to the traditional roofing material used in Ó Fraithile’s home country—and from cloth, ...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Caoimhghin Ó Fraithile, South of Hy-Brasil, 2016. Wood, reed, hay, cotton rag, bamboo, and birch poles, 25 x 10 x 18 ft.
Waltham, Massachusetts: Sarah Sze- Rose Art Museum
by Marty Carlock
Sarah Sze, TimekeeperSarah Sze is known for her complicated, sprawling sculptures, accumulations of small quotidian things that add up to enigmatic and overwhelming impressions. The meaning of her works is often subsidiary to the simple, ungraspable, in-yourface complexity of each piece. In Timekeeper (2016), her multifarious accretion became smaller and more unified than in many of her previous works. Improbably, instead of building the work out to the edges of all three sculptural dimensions, she managed to add the fourth dimension. The work, which was accompanied by projections, occupied a large, darkened gallery. This is the first video work I have seen from Sze; in typical fashion, she approached it from a unique perspective. Instead of focusing on one screen, she mounted several projectors on a central rotating axis, using the walls as screens....see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Sarah Sze, Timekeeper, 2016. Mirrors, wood, stainless steel, archival pigment prints, projectors, lamps, desks, stools, stone, and mixed media, dimensions variable.
New York: Barbara King- Narthex Gallery, St. Peter’s Church
by Renata Karlin
Barbara King, The Ribbon SpiralBarbara King’s recent exhibition, “Ribbon Meditations,” was shown in the narthex of St. Peter’s Church in Midtown Manhattan. For over 50 years, the church, which is committed to creatively shaping the life of the city and its community, has served immigrants, the homeless— people of every race, ethnicity, and language, at every economic level, and at every point of the gender spectrum. The arts play a vital part in living out this mission. The church commissions and installs permanent and temporary art, using it to spark public conversation and dialogue. An intersection of American culture, politics, and spirituality, “Rib - bon Meditations” fit squarely within the mission of the church, and it felt particularly appropriate during the contentious 2016 election cycle. The original idea for the works came from the yellow, ribbon-shaped magnets that appeared on the back fenders of cars in support of U.S. troops during the Iraq invasion...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Barbara King, The Ribbon Spiral, 2016, Arches paper, 5 x 21 ft.
New York: Fred Sandback- David Zwirner
by Stephanie Buhmann
Fred Sandback, Untitled Seven-part Vertical ConstructionThe Minimalist work of Fred Sand - back does not cease to amaze, with its elegant simplicity and radical transformation of line into sculpture. Especially when presented in complex installations such as this one, the poetic depth and large range of this unique oeuvre begins to shine. “Vertical Constructions” re-created and expanded on Sandback’s landmark 1987 exhibition at the West - fälischer Kunstverein in Münster, Germany, which featured six thennew works, each one engaging the vertical space. To reunite these sculptures in Chelsea almost 30 years later required collaboration between various private and public collections, bringing together works from the Deichtorhallen Hamburg/ Falckenberg Collection, the Menil Collection, and the Whitney Museum, among others. Meanwhile, similar works stemming from the earlier and later years of Sandback’s almost four-decade-long career offered additional context. For Sandback, line served For Sandback, line served as both self-assertive statement and delineation of space. He worked with the volume of sculpture without the opaque mass. Each work draws attention to itself in some way—to its length or the direction of the line, for instance, be it vertical...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Fred Sandback, Untitled Seven-part Vertical Construction 1987. Yellow, red, blue, and black acrylic yarn, dimensions variable.
Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada: Ruth Beer- The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford
by Maeve Hanna
Ruth Beer, installation view of States of Matter width=Ruth Beer’s recent exhibition, “States of Matter,” presented a suite of works that are beautiful in their materiality while portraying a sobering subject matter. The show arose from research that Beer had been conducting on the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline, which would carry raw bitumen from the tar sands in Northern Alberta across Northwestern British Columbia to the coast. Though Northern Gateway was cancelled, the Liberal government recently approved the building of a Liquefied Natural Gas pipeline along the same path despite widespread concern. ...see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Ruth Beer, installation view of "States of Matter," 2016.
Houston “From Space to Field” The Silos at Sawyer Yards
by Casey Gregory
Sharon Kopriva, REMNANTS de MUSESThe Silos at Sawyer Yards are slightly eerie. More than 30 vertical cylinders reach 80 feet into the yawning blackness of the warehouse’s ceiling. Scarred floors and walls speak to former industry, but the building manages to combine inhuman vastness with the more intimate scale of the individual silos. The honeycomb arrangement of the soaring tubes leaves the casual viewer slightly disoriented. In other words, the “white cube” model of an art space could not be further from Houston’s newest arts venue. This fact appears to have riveted the imaginations of the 22 sculptors who each commandeered a silo during Houston’s inaugural Sculpture Month (October to November 2016), now slated to become a bi-annual event. It was a massive endeavor, encompassing some 43 venues across the city, from galleries to the Intercontinental Airport, but the first and most memorable exhibition was “From Space to Field” at The Silos. The works ranged from freestanding sculpture to installation and performance, and the broad cross-section of artists provided a singular window on the types of three-dimensional work being created in the Bayou City. The foremost challenge in creating work for this juried exhibition was the interaction of the works with the visually charged interiors of the silos themselves....see the entire review in the print version of April's Sculpture magazine.

Sharon Kopriva, REMNANTS de MUSES, 2016. Mixed Media.

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