reviews

James Prestini

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)

Geometrically schematized forms derived from variously combining segments of H-beam, I-beam, cylindrical pipe and other foundry-standardized structural steel elements were the subject of an exhibition of recent sculptures by James Prestini organized by the San Francisco Museum of Art. The almost doctrinaire Bauhaus viewpoint which Prestini acquired in his long affiliation, first as a student and later as an instructor, with the Chicago Institute of Design in the 1940s, persists in his current work and in his expressed artistic platform. Prestini plates his basic steel elements with nickel or chromium, highly polished to achieve a reflective surface which has startling functions in the “echo-chamber-of-reflections” generated within his combinations and nestings of cylindrical forms.

It is in the asymmetrical groupings of cylindrical forms, as well as of planar slabs with large circular

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