previews

  • Katharina Fritsch, Elephant, 1987, polyester, wood, paint, 12' 5 5/8“ × 13' 9 3/8” × 5' 2". From “Sculpture After Sculpture.”

    “Sculpture After Sculpture”

    Moderna Museet | Stockholm
    Skeppsholmen
    October 11, 2014–January 18, 2015

    Curated by Jack Bankowsky

    What are the forms of sculpture after sculpture? This is curator Jack Bankowsky’s question—one worthy of Samuel Beckett—and the focus of his concise and probing exhibition of works by Katharina Fritsch, Charles Ray, and Jeff Koons. Born in the mid-1950s, all three could not help but confront the logic of 1960s objecthood, only to turn away from its deceptively analytic procedures with thoroughly dialectical aplomb. To see what persists of that earlier idiom is to focus on the surfaces—not the shapes—of their art: Fritsch’s matte primaries, Koons’s reflections, Ray’s silvery glow. Even so, it is the shapes chosen by these sculptors—their subjects—that matter most. To see Koons’s Metallic Venus, 2010–12, in conjunction with Fritsch’s blindingly yellow Madonna Figure, or her blue-green Elephant, both 1987, alongside Ray’s fabulous behemoth Tractor, 2005, is the chance of a lifetime—not least for viewers aware that each of these sculptures aims to exemplify an art for our times.