Drawing Redefined presents the distinctive work of Roni Horn, Esther Kläs, Joëlle Tuerlinckx, Richard Tuttle, and Jorinde Voigt, artists who have maintained a discipline of drawing as a constituent element of their artistic practice. For these artists, drawing is a forum for experimentation, a study, and an expansion of the vocabulary of images that recur in their art. In these artists' hands and through their bodies, the traditional practice of drawing is transformed into an exploration of time and space manifest in forms beyond conventional linear representation in photographic, painterly, and sculptural work.
Drawing Redefined is accompanied by an exhibition catalogue featuring essays by Connie Butler, Chief Curator, Hammer Museum; Cathleen Chaffee, Curator, Albright-Knox Art Gallery; Veronica Roberts, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas; Lexi Lee Sullivan, Assistant Curator, deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum; and Jennifer Gross, Chief Curator, deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum.
Organized by Jennifer Gross, Chief Curator and Deputy Director of Curatorial Affairs.
Due to a shift in our exhibition schedule, The Sculptor's Eye will be closing a week earlier than originally planned.
Drawn from deCordova’s permanent collection, this exhibition features works on paper and photographs by more than thirty artists who are primarily considered sculptors. Their work reveals the multitude of connections between two- and three-dimensional art making processes and the means by which artists nurture and expand their creative vision.
On view are photographs of sculptural forms that explore shared issues of space and volume. Pencil and charcoal drawings display the inventive ways in which artists experiment with spatial illusion on flat surfaces with graphic gestures, contours, and colors. Plans for large-scale art installations exemplify the tradition of artists considering architectural and environmental spaces. Altogether, these works emphasize the interplay of materiality, line, and form across artistic mediums.
Sally F. Fine
Robert and Shana Parkeharrison
One of deCordova's first themed outdoor exhibitions, Architectural Allusions is an international group exhibition of new commissions, long-term loans, and permanent collection works that explores the presence of architecture in contemporary sculpture. Using concrete, granite, glass, and other materials, exhibiting artists reinvent architectural traditions from ancient ziggurats to modernist pavilions. The exhibition features work by Stephanie Cardon, Dan Graham, Esther Kläs, Sol LeWitt, Monika Sosnowska, Kenneth Snelson, and Oscar Tuazon.
Boston-based sculptor Stephanie Cardon presents Beacon, constructed of two 11-foot tall concrete pillars connected by planes of thin electric yellow cables. The structure forms a passageway that visitors can walk under and look up through to experience the optical vibrations of the fluorescent cable lattice.
German artist Esther Kläs created a commission for deCordova during the spring of 2015. Kläs’s Ferma(5) is composed of two granite slabs that evoke weathered, time-worn architectural ruins and stone-laid pathways. Resting on the earth and largely hidden from view, Ferma (5) is meant to be discovered amid the Sculpture Park’s forested grounds.
Los Angeles-based sculptor Oscar Tuazon created Partners for deCordova in 2014. The work comprises a concrete beam that extends up and over to connect with one of the Sculpture Park’s maple trees, forming an architectural lintel between nature and culture.
Dan Graham’s Crazy Spheroid: Two Entrances, a two-way mirrored glass pavilion sculpture, was purchased for deCordova’s collection in 2009. While walking into and around the reflective half-ellipse structure, a viewer’s perception is disrupted, which establishes new relationships between one’s body and the surrounding landscape of the Sculpture Park.
Sol LeWitt’s Tower (DC) recalls both stepped towers of ancient ziggurats and the repeating recession of the façade of modern skyscrapers. Previously on long-term loan to the institution, deCordova recently acquired Tower (DC) in honor of Boston gallerist Barbara Krakow, who was recognized at deCordova’s Black and White in the Park gala.
Exhibited outdoors for the first time, Polish artist Monika Sosnowksa’s monumental sculpture Tower was installed in May 2015. Sosnowska’s sculpture is one of deCordova’s largest installations to date, measuring over 100 feet in length. Tower directly references the iconic architecture of Mies van der Rohe, specifically his Lake Shore Drive apartments in Chicago, Illinois. The sculpture is based on a portion of the building’s steel façade, which the artist has contorted into a cylindrical form. Tower challenges distinctions between architecture and sculpture.
Kenneth Snelson’s Wiggins Fork was added to the Sculpture Park during summer 2014. Constructed with stainless steel rods and tension wires, the sculpture is engineered to appear light and effortless despite its strength in design. Since the 1960s, Snelson has been employing the technical forces of compression and tension to create structures that are composed of both flexible and rigid components.
Walking Sculpture 1967–2015 considers the history and practice of walking as a means for questioning social, political, economic, and artistic hierarchies.
Featured artists include Francis Alÿs, Hannah Barco, Stanley Brouwn, André Cadere, Tyler Coburn, Kate Colby and Todd Shalom, Catherine D’Ignazio, Simon Faithfull, Shilpa Gupta, Sharon Hayes, Wendy Jacob, Joachim Koester, Melanie Manchot, Helen Mirra, Bruce Nauman, Paulo Nazareth, Michelangelo Pistoletto, and William Pope.L.
Inspired by Michelangelo Pistoletto’s 1967 performance Walking Sculpture, in which the artist rolled a newspaper sphere through city streets in Turin, Italy, Walking Sculpture 1967–2015 features an international selection of artists who engage in walking as an autonomous form of art, as cartography, as an exploration of physical experience, and as social practice. Pistoletto’s walking performance was an act of dissonance against both traditional methods of art-making and behavioral norms. In the same spirit, Walking Sculpture 1967–2015 considers artists’ use of this elemental and often overlooked act as a poetic means for questioning established conventions of seeing and thinking.
Sculpture, video, photography, and performance converge in this exhibition to address the multi-disciplinary practice of ambulation through the cityscape and the countryside. Walking Sculpture 1967–2015 is accompanied by a robust slate of public programming, including commissioned and artist-led walks in deCordova’s own Sculpture Park and in surrounding conservation lands in Lincoln and Concord, Massachusetts.
The exhibition is organized by Assistant Curator Lexi Lee Sullivan and is accompanied by a catalogue distributed by Yale University Press. Available for purchase at deCordova | Store.
This exhibition is supported in part by generous grants from the Art Mentor Foundation Lucerne, the Goldhirsh Foundation with special thanks to Donald and Jeanne Stanton, the Nathaniel Saltonstall Arts Fund, the Art Dealers Association of America Foundation (ADAA), and the Association of Museum Curators (AAMC). Additional support for this exhibition has been provided by an anonymous donor, Joyce Linde, and The Meredyth Hyatt Moses Fund.
Integrated Vision is an exhibition of permanent collection work that brings together highly textured, luminously pigmented paintings by György Kepes and bold, graphic screen prints of the moon’s surface by Len Gittleman to create a dialogue about science, nature, and art.
Writing about people’s inability to fully grasp the infinite knowledge available in the world–particularly in light of modern scientific advances–Kepes called for an “integrated vision” that assimilated the rational and the emotional experience. Presented together in Integrated Vision, works by Kepes and Gittleman create a conversation about the artist’s role in examining and interpreting empirical knowledge of science and nature through the lens of art.
Gittleman’s Lunar Transformation is a series of ten vividly colored serigraphs created from black and white photographs taken during the Apollo 15 mission to the moon in 1971. Gittleman uses bright color to transform the craters and crevices of the lunar surface into vibrant abstractions which recall Abstract Expressionist painting. The strong graphic prints reflect the awe-inspiring nature of their source material.
Best known for his photography, design, and writings about the marriage of art and science, Kepes was also a prolific painter. His paintings served as a vehicle for exploration of the relationship between structural and gestural marks, terrestrial and celestial allusions, and physical and metaphysical experiences. While abstract, the earthy texture and biomorphic shapes in Kepes’ paintings hint at landscapes, cosmic bodies, or amoebic forms.
Photographs by each artist will also be included to provide context for the serigraphs and paintings in relationship to the artists’ larger practices. Gittleman’s Polaroid photograms, like his serigraphs, use color and light to render abstract forms. Striking illusions of three-dimensionality appear in these images, which present a strong formal arrangement of shape, color, and shadow. Kepes’ photographs reveal a clear correlation with his paintings: both combine expressive lines and atmospheric lighting effects, reflecting his study of the intersection of science, art, and nature.
Presented at a time when the compulsion to digitally document and share human activity has increased exponentially, this exhibition features works from deCordova’s permanent collection that prefigure and inform current trends in social photography, as well as recent work by contemporary artists who utilize smartphones and social media to record the world around them. The Social Medium features work spanning from the mid-twentieth century to the present, and includes multiple photographic genres such as social documentary, street, society/celebrity, and portrait photography.
The Social Medium was largely inspired by a recent gift of one of Andy Warhol’s Little Red Books, which contains a set of color Polaroids. With his camera, Warhol documented the events of his life—from glamorous celebrity parties to mundane occurrences. The arrival of these photographs, which record Warhol’s artistic and social milieu (or environment), created an opportunity to examine the work of other artists who also photograph social experience.
Together, the work in this exhibition speaks to the continued relevance of the photographic medium’s singular power to capture and preserve personal and societal histories, and provides a selective history of the camera’s role as an extension of memory and a tool that is at once a witness to and participant in human social activity.
This exhibition features the work of Jules Aarons, Elsa Dorfman, Larry Fink, Charles “Teenie” Harris, Lotte Jacobi, Rodger Kingston, Phillip Maisel, Nicholas Nixon, Tod Papageorge, Bill Ravanesi, Eugene Richards, Michal Ronnen Safdie, Greg Schmigel, Neal Slavin, and Andy Warhol. The Social Medium has been generously funded by an anonymous donor.