Progressions also provide the basis for Jackie Ferrara’s work, but they are executed with a mathematical precision which places them at the opposite pole from the open-ended spatial investigations of Mary Miss. In Ferrara’s stepped plywood and masonite constructions, Conceptual and post-Minimal esthetics intersect, exploring the processes of stacking and building. Her work of the past couple of years is related to Smithson’s stacked glass and mirror pieces of 1969, though many of the new pieces exhibit a far higher degree of complexity than is present either in her earlier work or that of Smithson.
They also draw obvious inspiration from ancient architecture—pyramids, ziggurats and Mayan temples are alluded to with remarkable specificity. (A cursory search failed to turn up any exact models, which is less significant than the fact that the work is sufficiently suggestive to invite exploration.)
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