Traveling to the Venice Biennale and Milan for the first time, I expected to find myself exposed to a variety of curatorial approaches and institutions in an international setting. From a massive global biennial to private museums and foundations, my destinations would offer a very different perspective, approach, and geography for exhibitions.
Posts tagged ‘Cy Twombly’
On July 5, the art world lost one of its key figures when Cy Twombly passed away. A remarkably innovative and deeply influential artist, Twombly left an important legacy that resonates in a broad range of contemporary work.
On October 28 the exhibition Compass in Hand: Selections from The Judith Rothschild Foundation Contemporary Drawings Collection Gift opened at the Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno (IVAM) in Spain. If this exhibition sounds familiar to our frequent visitors and blog subscribers, that’s hardly a coincidence—from April 21, 2009, through January 4, 2010, this exhibition was on view in MoMA’s Contemporary Galleries.
As Dedalus Fellow in the Museum Archives, I received a travel grant to broaden my understanding of modern art. Last summer, I chose to journey to the American Southwest to view Earth art, Minimalism, and other forms of post-war abstraction in Texas and New Mexico. My goal was to examine the “art pilgrimage” from a critical perspective, while trying to achieve that spiritual experience associated with it: to turn myself into a pilgrim, while remaining grounded in art history.
My first destination was Lightning Field, Walter de Maria’s 1977 work near Quemado, New Mexico. The artwork, which comprises a grid of four hundred stainless steel poles, is located miles from civilization in a flat basin surrounded by mountains. Off to one edge is a cabin where visitors stay overnight. No photographs are allowed; de Maria insists on the primacy of one’s own, subjective experience of the work. Walking among the poles, my feet sank into soft clay. I watched the gleaming metal poles grow brilliant in the sunset, then fade. I listened to birds’ wings. I was rained upon. At night, I walked outside to deafening quiet and a Milky Way sky of exquisite clarity. It became clear why de Maria forbids photography: photographs would document only the New Mexico landscape, not the actual sensation of being here.
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