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Richard Serra at MoMA


Did you visit the Richard Serra Sculpture: Forty Years exhibition at MoMA? The museum’s website continues to offer the exhibition in audio and video. Most of show’s audio was Richard Serra’s voice supplying histories of the process of the art.

Starting on the sixth floor I was captured by the choice of the first piece overhead. Look up or you miss it and I think some did miss it: a huge steel plate imbedded in the ceiling. Further on, the materials such as vulcanized found doors evoked a lost industrial New York as well as the artist’s opportunistic eye.

The room quartered by "Circuit II", composed by four 10ft high sheets of Cor-Ten steel supported only by the room’s corners, corralled viewers in the room’s center. After "Circuit II," "One Tom Prop ( House of Cards)", and "Floor Pole Prop," I was left with questions. Are these sculptures displayed on the West Coast unwelded? Not sure. Is physical insecurity intentionally induced by Serra’s work? You betcha.

The immense scale of the elliptical undulating forms of his more recent works, "Sequence" and "Torqued Torus Inversion," with their slanting walls disoriented and unbalanced my progress. Meanwhile the textures of velvet or scaly rust tempted fingers. Somehow I doubt anyone could wander through this exhibition without being puzzled, intrigued, and amazed.

The exhibition catalog Richard Serra Sculpture: Forty Years. by Kynaston McShine, Benjamin Buchloh, Lynne Cooke, John Rajchman, Richard Serra. MoMA : New York, 2007.

Other Serra resources:

New York Times on Installing Richard Serra

See and hear Richard Serra as well as other artists in this PBS series: ART21

KQED with Richard Serra


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