Sundial is what Clark called a bicho, or critter—a type of sculpture whose hinged metal sheets can be folded into multiple configurations or flattened to a single plane. Though strictly geometric and carefully structured around several axes, the work becomes elusive and unpredictable once activated. Clark thought that to interact with Sundial was to engage in a process of mutual discovery and transformation through which identity—the participant’s and the work’s—can be radically redefined.
Gallery label from Sur moderno: Journeys of Abstraction—The Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Gift, October 21, 2019–March 14, 2020
Sundial belongs to Clark’s Animals series, begun in 1960—a group of metal sculptures whose forms can be endlessly modified. The works in this series are flat, curving structures that fold in different ways along a spine–like axis. Capable of many variations in form, they can also be reduced to a flat plane. Sundial was conceived to invite the spectator to modify its foldable geometric shapes.
Gallery label from 2006