New York

Brenda Miller

Whitney Museum of American Art

Ordination or counting has characterized Brenda Miller’s sculpture for the last six years. Her earlier work was conceived in two parts—first, as a diagram or drawing, then the work was executed on the wall. Rope or sisal was cut in lengths corresponding to the numbers in the diagram and resembled a shag rug of thick and thin densities as the varying lengths of rope overlapped. Eventually she discovered that she no longer needed the sensual three-dimensionality of sisal spilling into space. She realized that her work had two major concerns: literal density and the process of making.

In 1973 she turned to the alphabet, one of the most complex, limited systems available. She chose commercial rubber stamps in a Roman typeface with their evocation of old-fashioned printing because of their linear qualities. She says, “I wanted to see what would happen if I used all these marks—a circle, a curve,

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