new-york

“Bronze: Sculpture in the Landscape”

Wave Hill

Again the eternal—in nature, in the material of art; theoretically, the two came together in this important exhibition, which summarized a decade-long critique of the Modern tradition that allows the use of common, corruptible material in sculpture. Apart from the wood in Louise Bourgeois’ juggernaut—and it is the heavy-duty, “industrialized” wood of the giant spools on which cable is wound—every sculpture here was self-immortalized in bronze, that traditionally ennobling metal. There was no work that did not benefit from the transformation, no work not made more decisive by the decision to go the durable route. Indeed, one of the recognitions here was the appropriateness of the sense of permanence to the three-dimensional object; the feeling of constancy more than compensates for the consequent loss of familiarity. Bronze gives whatever is depicted a carrying power independent of its

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