PRINT February 1979

Art in Relation to Architecture / Architecture in Relation to Art

WHILE AMERICAN POP ART of the early 1960s referred to the surrounding media world for a framework, Minimal art of the mid- through late 1960s would seem to refer to the gallery’s interior cube as the ultimate contextual frame of reference for the work. This reference was only compositional; in place of an internal compositional reading, the art’s formal structure would appear in relation to the gallery’s interior architectural structure. That the work was equated to the architectural container tended to literalize it. Both the architectural container and the work it contained were meant to be seen as nonillusionistic, neutral and objectively factual—that is, simply as material. The gallery functioned literally as part of the art. One artist’s work of this period (although not always his later work) examined how specific, functional architectural elements of the gallery interior prescribed

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