New York

Wolfgang Laib

Sperone Westwater

The literature on Wolfgang Laib tends to draw from a set group of references. The coolly sensuous materials (beeswax, rice, pollen, milk, stone, occasional metals) are noted of necessity in every article, as are his early medical training, his hermetic working practices, and his interest in the ecstatic asceticism of Rumi and St. Francis. Laib’s tangential allegiance to Minimalism figures in, along with his deeper affinity with the idea of art-as-social-healer espoused by his countryman Joseph Beuys. The quartet of works in this show are all forms the artist has exhibited before, meditative repetition being more central to his work than innovation. What came to the fore here, however, was an aspect of Laib’s interests discussed infrequently: the dyad of architecture and landscape as an underlying principle in his work.

The exhibit took its title from the work that occupied the gallery’s

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